Height/Weight: 6-foot-4, 220 pounds
Hometown/High School: Atlanta, GA (Westminster School)
Ranking: ★★★★ (0.9341 247Sports Composite)
Notable Offers: Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, LSU, Ohio State, and USC
There are no publicly known visits to Happy Valley for Staes, so this one is a bit surprising on the surface. Like fellow 2022 tight end commit Jerry Cross, though, one could assume that Penn State’s recent use of the tight end is a big reason for Staes’ interest and now his commitment.
With Staes’ commitment, it gives Penn State four prospects in the 2022 class: four-star WR Kaden Saunders, four-star TE Jerry Cross, three-star QB Beau Pribula, and now four-star TE Holden Staes. Not too shabby.
Like we talked about with Cross, the tight end room is going to be crowded when Staes enrolls: Zack Kuntz (RS SR), Brenton Strange (RS JR), the 2020 duo of Theo Johnson and Tyler Warren, and fellow 2021 prospect Cross. Of course, attrition could be had at the position — whether it’s transfers, decommitments, or position changes — but regardless, that’s a lot of tight ends.
When you look at the combination of Cross and Staes as tight ends in the same class, they compliment each other well. Cross is definitely more of the receiving tight end, while Staes shows more of an all-around game of receiving and blocking. Really, they aren’t that dissimilar to Zack Kuntz and Pat Freiermuth as pair — Cross being Kuntz and Staes being Freiermuth, at least in how they play and what their role will be as tight ends.