Listed Measurements: 6-foot-5, 280 pounds
2018-19 year, eligibility: Incoming freshman with four years of eligibility remaining, including the 2018 season.
Depth chart: Patterson will be the third option at one of the tackle positions.
Recruiting: A rivals.com three-star prospect, Patterson de-committed from an initial pledge to Arizona State and eventually selected Notre Dame over UCLA, announcing his decision on the traditional National Signing Day.
Patterson’s immediate legacy is as the first high schooler to be primarily recruited by new Irish offensive line coach Jeff Quinn. In securing the West Coast product, Quinn got off to a strong start on the trail.
“[Patterson is] a great athlete, great size, length, moves well,” Quinn said on National Signing Day. “The one thing also that I felt that was really key for me, when I saw his film, it caught my eye — there was a focus and determination. He was intentional with his technique, his hands, his body positioning, how he was finishing guys.
“You could tell between his junior year and his senior year, he made great strides in the weight room. He dedicated himself to the weight room, he was eating better. He had that mindset. There was a purpose that he had in terms of what he wanted to demonstrate on the field because he knew that was going to provide him some opportunities.”
WHAT WAS SAID WHEN PATTERSON’S NATIONAL LETTER OF INTENT ARRIVED
“The Irish made Patterson a priority after the early signing period. Given the program’s years of offensive line excellence, that was not a decision made on a whim. He progressed throughout high school, and his pass protection skills make him a possible tackle of the future.”
Notre Dame presumes to have its next two or three years of starting tackles in sophomore Robert Hainsey at right tackle and junior Liam Eichenberg at left, each with three years of eligibility remaining. With able sophomores Josh Lugg and Aaron Banks around as backups, Patterson will not be needed as anything more than an emergency reserve this season.
Thus, expect Patterson to spend the year in the weight room, furthering the progress Quinn reported from last summer.
DOWN THE ROAD
Even if both Hainsey and Eichenberg excel at tackle and exhaust their eligibility, Patterson would have two years to play after their departures. That should be plenty of time to make an impact. Such a delay is more common than often discussed.
He will likely get some lip service as a possible guard candidate next spring with the exit of fifth-year left guard Alex Bars, but Patterson’s future is most likely at tackle, just not right away. Yet, he could be within the two-deep in 2019. Some combination of Lugg, Banks and sophomore Dillan Gibbons will likely fill the starter and backup roles at left guard next year. Presuming little other shuffling among the starters, Patterson could end up the primary backup at either tackle position, at which point he will be one rolled ankle away from protecting the starting quarterback.
WHY NO. 77?
As always, the numbers are not yet known for incoming freshmen, but Patterson wore No. 78 in high school and No. 77 is as close to those digits as is available on the Irish roster. Patterson probably will not wear No. 77, but it is distinctly possible.
NOTRE DAME 99-to-2:
No. 99 Jerry Tillery, defensive tackle, senior
No. 97 Micah Dew-Treadway, defensive tackle, senior
No. 95 Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, defensive tackle, sophomore
No. 94 Darnell Ewell, defensive tackle, sophomore
No. 93 (theoretically) Ja’Mion Franklin, defensive tackle, incoming freshman
No. 91 Ade Ogundeji, defensive end, junior
No. 90 (theoretically) Tommy Tremble, tight end, incoming freshman
No. 89 Brock Wright, tight end, sophomore
No. 88 Javon McKinley, receiver, junior
No. 87 Michael Young, receiver, sophomore
No. 86 Alizé Mack, tight end, senior
No. 85 George Takacs, tight end, early-enrolled freshman
No. 85 Tyler Newsome, punter and captain, fifth-year senior
No. 84 Cole Kmet, tight end, sophomore
No. 83 Chase Claypool, receiver, junior
No. 82 Nic Weishar, tight end, fifth-year senior
No. 81 Miles Boykin, receiver, senior
No. 80 Micah Jones, receiver, early-enrolled freshman
No. 79 (theoretically) Cole Mabry, offensive tackle, incoming freshman
No. 78 Tommy Kraemer, right guard, junior
No. 11 Freddy Canteen, receiver, outgoing transfer