Measures listed: 6 feet 2 inches, 230 pounds.
Year 2021-22, eligibility: Senior, Bauer has two more seasons of eligibility, thanks to the universal pandemic eligibility waiver.
Depth table: Bauer stays behind fifth-year linebacker Drawn white in usual defensive lineups, but it has become more of a timeshare in 2020, with Bauer excelling more in specific passing situations.
Recruitment: A four-star prospect and the nation’s No.5 inside linebacker, according to rivals.com, as well as the No.15 rookie overall, Bauer chose Notre Dame over offers from Michigan State, Penn State and Vanderbilt. Given how remarkable a rookie he was, Bauer’s hiring 18 months before his expected signing put the brakes on the potential drama of the process.
Bauer has excelled in all kinds of special teams moments, as his own celebration has proven to be costly, and in situational situations on defense, but he has yet to find a consistent role in defense.
His 2018 featured moments of special teams success, followed by being named special teams MVP in 2019 while recording just 91 defensive shots. That number eventually skyrocketed in 2020, taking 275 defensive snaps, mostly on third-down service.
2018: 12 games, 10 tackles.
2019: 7 games, 12 tackles.
2020: 12 games, 26 tackles including 4.5 for an interception loss against Pittsburgh.
NAME, IMAGE, LIKE
So many critics of the NIL legislation have clung to the concept of young men and women making their profits, and thus missed the increased opportunity to get to know these young men and women beyond their respective competitions.
Increased exposure for Bauer, for example, will lead to increased exposure of his ever-present hashtag, #BeADog. This is not a generic motivational slogan. Rather, it is a deep and personal reminder for Bauer.
That’s the slogan adopted by his former high school mate Ian Malesiewski, a wrestler who broke his neck trying to qualify for an international competition.
Bauer could (and should) make money with his own name, image, and likeness. It could (and should) also amplify attention to Malesiewski’s advocacy for people with disabilities.
The idea that young men and women benefit from college sports should not prevent myopic people from recognizing these additional opportunities for good works.
Bauer was never able to hide his emotions or his aggressiveness on the pitch. He celebrated once so violently that he injured himself. A few times, he grazed or pulled penalties for questionable hits. In a way that is both flawed and serious, Bauer is a returning linebacker.
While playing for the former Irish defensive coordinator Clark LeaBauer had to go through a myriad of missions and make instant decisions that fit into the complex pattern. Basically, Lea’s defense has worked, as evidenced by just about every metric over the past three seasons, including two playoff appearances.
But Notre Dame’s new defensive coordinator Marcus FreemanBauer’s emphasis on instincts and free play might suit Bauer better, in particular.
âCoach Lea is a great coach and he asked us to know a lot of different rules and to be very thorough, which is really important to our process, but it was sometimes difficult to play with your natural instincts,â said Bauer said in late March, just weeks after learning about Freeman’s system. âIt was a great time for me to be able to learn to be part of a unit and do a job. It was very important for my growth.
âI think it might be easier this year to learn both positions (middle and low). … It’s a little easier because [Freeman] taught it before, and there might be less complexity in making calls and changing things right before the snap, more just knowing the rules and how to execute them at the end of the day.
The challenge for Freeman, more than for Bauer but also for Bauer, is to get Bauer and White onto the pitch at the same time. Linebacker was not a worrying position in 2020 for the Irish, even outside of JÃ©rÃ©mie Owusu-Koramoah, but it’s also not an overwhelming position of trust at the moment.
This creates both an opportunity for Bauer to force a reshuffle and a lack of necessity to do so.
Notre Dame does not yet know who will be her main linebacker; he must first find his main rover. At first glance, neither does Bauer. But he showed enough in 2020 to make it a possibility.
Bauer is quick enough to stick with most tight ends and covering running backers, yet aggressive enough to serve as an effective blitzer. Hence its third applicability down last season. Continuing primarily in that role would give Bauer plenty of chances to make an impact in 2021. After all, third downs are obviously important.
And in “just” this role, Bauer would still have a lot of energy to become coordinator of the Irish special teams. Brian Polianis life easier.
We define a âdifference makerâ as someone who demands and can beat a double team. @____ bb52 wins against a double here and shows relentless efforts to reach the ball! #TechnicalTuesday âï¸ð¬ pic.twitter.com/JGwS4i4HRB
– Brian Polian (@BrianPolian) May 25, 2021
DOWN THE ROAD
Bauer could become the rare actor who actually capitalizes on the universal pandemic eligibility waiver. After a third year as a starter in 2021, White’s college time could be up (although he technically has one season of eligibility left). At this point, despite the influx of linebacker hires over the last round, Bauer should be White’s heir apparent.
Normally Bauer wouldn’t have that extra eligibility season, but those aren’t normal times, especially in the way the NCAA handles eligibility. Notre Dame may hesitate to use many years of pandemic exceptions, but a starting middle linebacker with Bauer’s experience and talent would be the case type Freeman and the Irish head coach Brian kelly would have to consider.
Let’s try again
No. 99 Rylie Mills, second-year defensive tackle
No.98 Alexander Ehrensberger, second-year defensive end
No.97 Gabriel Rubio, first-year defensive tackle inscribed at the start of the size of a Volkswagen
No 95 Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, fifth-year defensive tackle turned winger
No.92 Aidan Keanaaina, second-year defensive tackle
No. 88 Mitchell Evans, first freshman, a former high school quarterback
Michael Mayer, No.87, star second-year tight end and primary offensive weapon
N Â° 85 George Takacs, senior tight end, ‘152 years old’
No. 84 Kevin Bauman, second tight end
N Â° 82 Xavier Watts, second receiver
No. 81 Jay Brunelle, second-year quick receiver
No. 80 Cane Berrong, first-year winger entered early
No. 79 Tosh Baker, second-year offensive tackle
N Â° 78 Pat Coogan, new first year center
No.77 Quinn Carroll, junior offensive lineman
No.76 Joe Alt, entering and imposing freshman offensive lineman
No.75 Josh Lugg, fifth-year right tackle, finally starting
No.73 Andrew Kristofic, junior offensive tackle, possible backup center
No.72 Caleb Johnson, early-listed attacking tackle, former Auburn clerk
No. 70 Hunter Spears, junior offensive guard, former defensive tackle
No.68 Michael Carmody, second-year offensive tackle
No. 57 Jayson Ademilola, senior defensive tackle
No. 56 John Dirksen, senior reserve offensive lineman
No. 56 Howard Cross, junior defensive tackle
No. 55 Jarrett Patterson, Ireland’s top offensive lineman
# 54 Jacob Lacey, junior defensive tackle
No. 54 Blake Fisher, early entry-year left tackle, starting?
No 52 Zeke Correll, junior, starting center
Marshall goalkeeper No.62 Cain Madden moves to Notre Dame, likely leaving in 2021