PARK HILLS – While he hopes for one more state championship, Michael Mayer will have one more high school football game to play after his Covington Catholic football career is over.
Mayer is the second-ranked tight end in the country by 247sports.com, and 52nd overall in the nation, plus the No. 1 overall player in Kentucky. He received his U.S. Army All-American Bowl jersey Monday at Covington Catholic High School.
The 6-foot-5, 240-pounder, who plays tight end and linebacker for the Colonels, has committed to the University of Notre Dame as a tight end. He will join Princeton offensive lineman Paris Johnson (Ohio State) and Wyoming quarterback Evan Prater (Cincinnati) on the All-American roster.
“Being associated with people like (All-Pro lineman) Joe Thomas and other players who have committed to play this game is a huge honor,” Mayer said.
The annual contest will take place Jan. 4, 2020, at the Alamodome in San Antonio with NBC televising at 1 p.m.
Mayer is the first-ever Covington Catholic player to earn an invite to the game, and the first Northern Kentuckian since Conner quarterback Drew Barker (Kentucky) in 2014.
Mayer, a four-star recruit, committed to the Fighting Irish last year. He made waves at The Opening national combine in Texas, where he was teammates with Paris Johnson.
Mayer had to be convinced to take up freshman football during his first year at CovCath, but immediately grew to love high school ball.
“He almost didn’t play high school football, which is crazy to think about,” Covington Catholic head coach Eddie Eviston said. “Now he’s sitting here as the top player in his position in the country. His hard work, his dedication to his craft, the support from everyone here…He does all these appearances, camp invites, all these things people don’t realize are going on behind closed doors. Michael has handled everything with grace and it’s been incredible to watch.”
CovCath principal Bob Rowe echoed those sentiments.
“Anyone who watches him play knows about his athletic abilities,” Rowe said. “However, what impresses me the most about Michael is how he makes everyone around him better. He’s the ultimate team player and he will put others before him on and off the field. Michael is and will be an extremely successful person because he is polite, intelligent young man of excellent character. He carries himself with integrity and he is not afraid to stand up for what’s right.”
The Colonels are 39-1 since Mayer became a varsity player, with one state championship in 2017. Mayer plays a vital role on both sides of the ball, becoming one of Northern Kentucky’s leading receivers and leading the defensive front for a team that has allowed only 61 points all season, 38 to one team (Lexington Catholic).