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Notre Dame 99-to-2: No. 76 Dillan Gibbons, offensive guard

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Listed Measurements: 6-foot-4, 308 pounds.
2019-20 year, eligibility: A junior, Gibbons has three seasons of eligibility remaining, including 2019.
Depth chart: If Gibbons cracks the two-deep, it will be because fifth-year guard Trevor Ruhland struggles to maintain functional health. Otherwise, both Ruhland and junior Josh Lugg are ahead of Gibbons as the backup guards.
Recruiting: A rivals.com three-star recruit, Gibbons was Notre Dame’s first commitment in the class of 2017, making that decision way back in April of 2015.

CAREER TO DATE
After preserving a season of eligibility in 2017, Gibbons appeared in four games last year, all blowouts (Wake Forest, Virginia Tech, Florida State and Syracuse).

WHAT WAS PROJECTED A YEAR AGO
“No one wants to find playing time solely because of an injury to a teammate. By no means does Gibbons hope for Kraemer, Mustipher or Bars to fall with so much as a sprained ankle. It is, however, a fact of life in football.

“Serving as an injury replacement possibility for so much of the line means Gibbons very well might see competitive time this season. Even if he does not back up Mustipher, Bars may, and that would inherently create a need at guard, to be filled by either Gibbons or Ruhland.”

2019 OUTLOOK
A year ago, Gibbons looked to be on the verge of cracking the rotation. The development of both junior Aaron Banks and Lugg at guard reduced those odds, but it does not inherently speak to Gibbons taking a step backward. All the same can be said of his chances of taking over at center with Sam Mustipher’s departure, where instead of Gibbons taking a shot, sophomore Jarrett Patterson moved to snapping, already a fit so natural it speaks to whatever the coaching staff saw to think of the switch.

That overall strengthening of the Irish line leaves Gibbons looking at mop-up duty for another year.

DOWN THE ROAD
Notre Dame is also in the unique position of expecting its entire starting offensive line to return in 2020, along with all its backups aside from Ruhland. Thus, Gibbons’ path to playing time is slim, looking at little more than second-string duties next year. At that point, he will have only one season of eligibility remaining, to presumably be used in 2021. Starting then will depend on holding off the likes of sophomore John Dirksen and freshman John Olmstead, not to mention the current recruiting class, though no current commits project as guards in the future.

NOTRE DAME 99-to-2:
Introduction
No. 95: Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, defensive tackle
No. 94: Darnell Ewell, defensive tackle
No. 91: Ade Ogundeji, defensive end
No. 90: Hunter Spears, defensive tackle, early-enrolled consensus four-star
No. 89: Brock Wright, tight end
No. 88: Javon McKinley, receiver
No. 87: Michael Young, receiver
No. 85: George Takacs, tight end
No. 84: Cole Kmet, tight end
No. 83: Chase Claypool, receiver
No. 80: Micah Jones, receiver
No. 78: Tommy Kraemer, right guard, three-year starter
No. 77: Quinn Carroll, offensive tackle, early-enrolled consensus four-star