Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Film Don't Lie: Kevin Bauman

June 13, 2018
3,322

(DJ Khaled voice) Another one. 

Notre Dame looks like they could very well pass on a tight end in the 2019 recruiting class much like they did in the 2016 cycle. It worked out for them in 2017 when they added Brock Wright and Cole Kmet as commitments before their junior seasons and it looks like it could pay off in a big way again after the Irish just added another 4-star tight end Kevin Bauman.

Already a big body with impressive ball skills, Bauman is simply the latest addition to the Tight End U brand that has been established for the Irish.

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 230

Projected Position: Tight End

ISD Grade: 90 (4-star)

National Average Grade: 92.3 (4 star)

What he does best:

What I like most about Bauman is that he is a natural hands-catcher. He snatches the ball away from his body and that’s something that is so critical for the tight end position where most catches are in high traffic areas.

via GIPHY

He’s going to win many contested balls because of it. He not only does a good job of hanging on to the football when he absorbs a hit, but his body control is outstanding.

This is subtle on this touchdown. He finds the open spots and sits there waiting for the ball to arrive. When it does, the defender arrives at almost the same time, but Bauman turns his body to shield the defender away from the football.

via GIPHY

He has above average short area quickness and runs well for his size. If he has space, he can do some damage after the catch as well.

What he needs to improve:

It’s not surprising that blocking is something that he needs to improve. It's that way for most young tight ends. He is more than willing and he has a bit of a physical edge (it’s very evident on the basketball court), but he doesn’t generate a ton of power at the point of attack.

Bauman doesn’t have that "pop" quite yet and you can see on this play he false steps backwards.

via GIPHY

Technically he has some things to work on to become an in-line factor at the next level, but obviously he has plenty of time to grow that area of his game.

Although he does some good things after the catch, I’d like to see him be more of a tackler breaker and run through defensive backs more often. He needs to make himself more difficult to bring down in the open field.

What’s his ceiling?

He’s already a prospect that has good size and yet he is nowhere close to as big as he is going to be. Bauman appears to have the type of frame to carry close to 260 pounds at the next level and that will certainly help in those two areas I marked for improvement.

Even the best athletes at tight end aren’t going to run away from smaller defensive backs and linebackers so the things Bauman is already good at as a receiver can go a long way into making him a very productive player at Notre Dame. He can win the way great tight ends need to win against strong competition.

That’s why he has such a high ceiling. If blocking improves like expected, then he has all the tools to be TE1 at some point for the Irish. We know TE1s end up in the NFL if they wear blue and gold so that pretty much says it all about what type of player he can become.

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