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PORTAL NEWS: Tennessee lands No. 1 transfer portal TE Holden Staes

NCAA Football: Central Michigan at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Finally, some good news for Tennessee when it comes to the transfer portal.

Last night, Notre Dame tight end transfer Holden Staes committed to Tennessee, first reported by On3. Staes was the top ranked tight end in the transfer portal, and the 15th player overall according to 247sports. A highly sought after prospect, Staes garnered interest from some of the top programs in the country, including Georgia, Oklahoma, and Washington.

The sophomore tight end had a handful of visits last week, and initially had scheduled a visit to Norman this weekend, but canceled it just before committing to Tennessee.

Staes played in 11 games for the Fighting Irish last year, recording 15 receptions for 176 yards and four touchdowns — numbers we can expect to go up in a Heupel-run offense.

In terms of on-field rankings and metrics, Staes earned a a 60.6 PFF grade last year at Notre Dame. For additional context, Tennessee tight ends Jacob Warren and McCallan Castles earned a 60.7 and 65.0 PFF grade respectively.

In what’s been a rather disappointing transfer portal cycle up to this point, Staes’ commitment gives Tennessee fans something to smile about. Look for Heupel and company to add some more players as the portal continues to ramp up.