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Notre Dame 99-to-2: No. 56 John Dirksen, offensive lineman

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Listed Measurements: 6-foot-5, 310 pounds.
2019-20 year, eligibility: A sophomore, Dirksen has all four seasons of eligibility remaining, including 2019, after not appearing in any games as a freshman.
Depth chart: Whether or not Dirksen cracks the two-deep at either right guard or right tackle, it will be a nominal designation. The Notre Dame offensive line would need to endure multiple injuries in order for Dirksen to see significant playing time.
Recruiting: A consensus three-star prospect, Dirksen pondered offers from Iowa State, Michigan State and Boston College before choosing the Irish. For those wondering, rivals.com rated Dirksen the No. 37 offensive tackle in the class of 2018.

CAREER TO DATE
Dirksen spent 2018 on the sidelines, taking a traditional redshirt.

WHAT WAS PROJECTED A YEAR AGO
“After Dirksen spends 2018 on the sidelines, he will be two seasons of eligibility behind the triumvirate of junior left tackle Liam Eichenberg, right guard (Tommy) Kraemer and right tackle Robert Hainsey. If Dirksen does not push past the grouping of current sophomores who will vie for the guard spot opened up by Bars’ departure, biding his time until 2021 will not be that long of a wait.”

2019 OUTLOOK
Notre Dame’s starting line is set (more on that below). Its backups are flexible in that only one or two are needed to cover all five positions. If the Irish have to dip to an eighth lineman in competitive moments, perhaps Dirksen could factor into the equation, but he would be competing with myriad others.

More likely, he works in mop-up duty, no longer even constrained by a four-game limit.

DOWN THE ROAD
It is a tough road at Notre Dame for a three-star offensive lineman. Consider: In the Brian Kelly era only two rivals.com three-star offensive linemen have reached frontline starter status, one of whom has yet to actually make that start. Nick Martin, class of 2011, started 37 games across three seasons, primarily at center. And current sophomore Jarrett Patterson, one of Dirksen’s classmates, is set to start at center on Labor Day.

That’s it among nine recruiting classes. (No need to count the class of 2019 yet, right?)

If there is reason to think Dirksen someday might crack the starting lineup, it traces to the class he came in with, one consisting of only a quartet of three-stars, with Cole Mabry and (since-departed) Luke Jones joining Patterson and Dirksen. More highly-touted prospects both preceded and followed the grouping, but Dirksen has already had a solid chance to get a leg up on the newcomers.

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
No. 76: Dillan Gibbons, offensive guard
No. 75: Josh Lugg, offensive lineman
No. 74: Liam Eichenberg, left tackle, two-year starter
No. 73: Andrew Kristofic, offensive tackle, early-enrolled consensus four-star
No. 72: Robert Hainsey, offensive tackle, three-year starter
No. 71: John Olmstead, offensive lineman, early-enrolled consensus four-star
No. 69: Aaron Banks, left guard
No. 60: Cole Mabry, offensive tackle
No. 57: Trevor Ruhland, veteran backup offensive lineman
No. 57: Jayson Ademilola, defensive tackle