Notre Dame TE coach Gerad Parker focuses on serving


Notre Dame is selling out rookies, and Gerad Parker found himself in the same boat when John McNulty left for Boston College.

It’s football at the highest level, but coaching tight ends at Notre Dame is a no-brainer, even for Parker, who left West Virginia as offensive co-coordinator.

“I think the most important thing for me was that you come to a very prestigious university, as we know and agree, you come to a place that expects to compete and play at the highest level and win national championships,” Parker said. “You have the chance to train a position that should be the group’s number one position in the country. What better challenge than that?

“Absolutely, it had something to do with it. You want to put yourself in a position to be pushed and held to a standard that was put in place long before me. I’m really excited to live up to that standard and hopefully , to continue to build on this legacy and momentum.”

Notre Dame makes a deep and tight play in 2022 and the unit is titled junior Michael Mayer. The 6-foot-4, 251-pound player recorded an absurd 113 catches for 1,290 yards and nine touchdowns in his first two years at South Bend.

It’s easy for Notre Dame fans to get excited about the potential of the tight ends room this year and Parker is no different.

In fact, Parker hasn’t coached tight ends since 2013, adding to his excitement about getting started.

“Like everything, I thought about it a lot. It’s no different from my first job coaching running backs as a LS in 2007 and I had no idea what I was doing,” said explained Parker. “So that part is refreshing because I’ve done it and been around it and had to think about the full scope of it all over the last few years.

“Being able to come back to that coaching job when I was at Purdue helps. But it’s like anything, how do you get good at something? You get good at doing it. So I think the biggest piece is going to lean on the staff and the guys who have been around it in more detail to catch up.”

Adjusting to the coaching role will be Parker’s biggest challenge and the staff at Notre Dame have made that transition easy in the first few weeks.

“Tommy (Rees) was terrific, just what they’ve done here before offensively,” Parker said. “His pedigree, what he’s been through as a player, growing up in the NFL as a young coach, growing up here and in the position he’s in, he’s been great and accepted us well. His knowledge and who he is as a human being, you can just see right now.

“It’s the same with the staff. The staff have been great, Deland (McCullough coming in, Coach (Harry) Hiestand, my man Stuck (Chansi Stuckey). Everyone has been with open arms, trying to figure it all out. The support staff too Everyone has been pros Everything you would expect from Notre Dame is what it has been starting with Tommy I can’t wait to see what we build together.

As for her goals before Spring Ball, Parker just wants to make life easier for everyone on the program.

“Serve the people around you, serve the offensive coordinator and head coach first, then your players,” Parker said. “I think the more you get into this business, the less you realize it’s about you and everyone around you.

“So that’s my focus. Just to make sure that I serve the staff, that I serve the players around them, that I take care of them and when I’m asked my opinion or when I’m asked otherwise thing, be ready to do it and add value.”


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