The tight end position has long been underutilized by UConn football despite seemingly having talent available. Alec Bloom and Tommy Myers both graduated, but there is still plenty of promise at the position for the Huskies this season, it’s just a matter of if they will be involved in the offense.
After a strong season at wide receiver where he caught 37 passes for 568 yards, the coaching staff decided to move the 6-foot-5 McLean to tight end. So far, tight ends coach Corey Edsall is pleased with the transition.
“The biggest thing with him is he has that aggressiveness and desire to block,” Corey Edsall said. “He’s not afraid, and that’s half of it. The other half he got a lot better with and I think this training camp he’ll take that next step to becoming an even better blocker.”
As long as he can be serviceable while blocking, McLean should be the top target at tight end thanks to his experience at receiver.
After coming to UConn as a quarterback, Davis switched to tight end during the 2016 season. But last year, Randy Edsall and staff switched him back and forth between wide receiver and tight end throughout the season.
However, Davis bulked up this season and will likely stay put at tight end this season, allowing him to learn “the little small details of the position.”
Even with all the changes last season, Davis racked up 14 catches for 156 yards. He’ll compete with McLean for the job at starting tight end and if they both impress, it could force offensive coordinator John Dunn to use more two tight end sets.
Rose was the crown jewel of Bob Diaco’s 2016 recruiting class but the Southington, Connecticut left the team before the first game of the season. He returned this past season with Edsall in charge and saw time as a freshman, playing mostly special teams.
With a full year in the system and with the coaching staff, Rose should have a better chance at cracking the lineup and catching passes this season. It may be tough for him to find snaps with Davis and McLean ahead of him, but Rose certainly has the talent to be a force at tight end.
Holman is certainly one of the most unique characters on UConn football’s roster. A native of Croatia, Holman is a world champion in jiu-jitsu and wants to be the heavyweight champion of the world.
However, that hasn’t helped him much on the football field as redshirt junior has not seen a snap during his three years in Storrs.
Randy Edsall says there’s a role for Holman as a tight end but they need to “get him out of the jiu-jitsu mode and the MMA mode and more into tight end mode.”
Other position previews: