Irish A-to-Z: Colin McGovern

Entering his third year in the program, offensive lineman Colin McGovern hasn’t found his way into the lineup. That’s the product of a depth chart filled with other talented options, as well as McGovern dealing with injuries and position switches as he looks to find his niche.

A long way removed from his highly-touted recruiting ranking, McGovern’s career is still far from being over. But as Harry Hiestand continues to bring in talent by the truckload, it’ll be up to McGovern this season to show his ability, putting him in line to make a move as he becomes an upperclassman.

Let’s take a closer look at the versatile offensive lineman.

 

COLIN MCGOVERN
6’4.5″, 315 lbs.
Junior, No. 62, OL

 

RECRUITING PROFILE

A hand-picked Harry Hiestand recruit, McGovern picked Notre Dame over offers from Alabama, Ohio State, Michigan, Nebraska, and a ton of other elite programs.

His star-rating varied based on the recruiting service, but McGovern looked the part of a national recruit that Notre Dame managed to pull out of Chicagoland. While he was recruited by some programs as a tackle, Notre Dame always saw him as a guard.

McGovern committed to Notre Dame the same day as classmate Hunter Bivin.

 

PLAYING CAREER

Freshman Season (2013): Did not see action.

Sophomore Season (2014): Played in two games as a reserve guard, seeing action against both Rice and Michigan.

 

WHAT WE SAID LAST YEAR

With Steve Elmer’s shift back inside and the emergence of Quenton Nelson, McGovern is still looking for his way into the mix.

It’s still likely too soon to see McGovern challenge for a starting job, but if injuries hit like they did last year, expect McGovern to be one of the players to get a call. Right now, you’ll likely see No. 62 playing offensive line on special teams, a nice transitional year before heading into stiff competition for Christian Lombard’s right guard job, the only spot that currently projects vacant in 2015.

McGovern is one of the top under-the-radar prospects on the team. His versatility and size should let him find the field in a utility role if necessary, but even if that doesn’t happen in 2014, the future looks very bright for McGovern.

 

FUTURE POTENTIAL

Every time I’ve seen footage of McGovern, I’ve liked what I saw. But at this point in his career—especially with the talent that’s in front of him—versatility might be the best thing that McGovern has going for him.

At guard, the next two seasons look fairly certain with Quenton Nelson and Steve Elmer locked into place. At tackle, Mike McGlinchey looks like a lock on the right side while Alex Bars is likely waiting in the very large wings of Ronnie Stanley.

If I’m reading the depth chart, I start snapping a football, knowing that the battle to replace Nick Martin starts this spring. And while three seasons of eligibility remaining is plenty of time to make a move, McGovern’s ceiling will likely be determined by how well he performs in camp, and if the staff believes he’s good enough to find a way into the lineup.

 

CRYSTAL BALL

Right now, the weak spot on Notre Dame’s offensive line is the depth at tackle and center. I’m not convinced that Hunter Bivin is the best option if someone goes down on the outside, and that’s a place where McGovern might be able to thrive.

Brian Kelly went out of his way to discuss McGovern this spring, praising both his size and ability, and talking about his opportunity to cross-train across the guard and tackle depth chart.

It’ll likely take someone going down for McGovern to get his chance, but if he has a strong camp, I get the feeling that he and Alex Bars will ascend to the key backups at tackle, while McGovern could also make a case for being a candidate to be sixth-or-seventh man.

 

THE 2015 IRISH A-to-Z
Josh Adams, RB
Josh Barajas, OLB
Nicky Baratti, S
Alex Bars, OL
Asmar Bilal, OLB
Hunter Bivin, OL
Grant Blankenship, DE
Jonathan Bonner, DE
Miles Boykin, WR
Justin Brent, WR
Greg Bryant, RB
Devin Butler, CB
Jimmy Byrne, OL
Daniel Cage, DL
Amir Carlisle, RB
Nick Coleman, DB
Te’von Coney, LB
Shaun Crawford, DB
Scott Daly, LS
Sheldon Day, DL
Michael Deeb, LB
Micah Dew-Treadway, DL
Steve Elmer, RG
Matthias Farley, DB
Nicco Fertitta, DB
Tarean Folston, RB
Will Fuller, WR
Jarrett Grace, LB
Jalen Guyton, WR
Mark Harrell, OL
Jay Hayes, DL
Mike Heuerman, TE
Kolin Hill, DE
Tristen Hoge, C
Corey Holmes, WR
Chase Hounshell, TE
Torii Hunter, Jr. WR
Alizé Jones, TE
Jarron Jones, DL
DeShone Kizer, QB
Tyler Luatua, TE
Cole Luke, CB
Nick Martin, C
Greer Martini, LB
Jacob Matuska, DL
Mike McGlinchey, OT