Connor McMahon always wanted to be like his father but without the nickname.
“They used to call my dad Stone Hands McMahon,” Connor McMahon laughed. “That was when he was in high school.”
He’s avoided the nickname through his junior year as the Canon-McMillan tight end and defensive lineman has inherited the athletic genes passed down from both parents. A combination of that athleticism and a 6-3, 250-pound frame to display it have led to more and more colleges calling.
McMahon received an offer to play college football at Air Force, his sixth offer since ending his junior season. He also has offers from Dartmouth, Fordham, Columbia, Penn and Holy Cross.
“My dad has been joking with me on how lucky I am,” Connor McMahon said of the genes. “I guess I’m lucky to have those genetics.”
Connor’s father, Eric, was a defensive end at Kent State. His mother, Jennifer, played softball at Youngstown State.
McMahon has gotten on the field since his freshman season for the Big Macs and his roles have increased in years since, being a mainstay at tight end and interchanging at different spots on the defensive line.
He was a second-team all-conference selection as a defensive lineman last season.
“He came in as a freshman and knew how to block and run his feet, which are things that can take time to teach,” Canon-McMillan football coach Mike Evans said. “He just does things right. When you play 6A football in western Pennsylvania, if you do things right you are going to get noticed. It’s going to happen.”
McMahon has accompanied technique with a size to match, gaining nearly 80 pounds since his freshman year. That came along with a 4.25 grade-point average.
Schools have recruited him to remain at tight end or play on the defensive line, while others see him in their programs converting to the offensive line. He said he’ll play either side of the ball in college.
McMahon had planned to start seeing some of the schools that have reached out but the coronavirus pandemic has limited him to video calls and virtual tours.
“It’s been very exciting,” McMahon said. “I was really hoping to get some offers. Overall, my size, speed and intelligence has just grown greatly. I’ve become more vocal. I’ve reached out to every coach I can find on Twitter.”
Evans said McMahon’s statistics don’t indicate how much he truly does for Canon-McMillan, creating a reliable option and safety valve for quarterbacks and helping stuff the run and free up others on the defensive side.
“He plays aggressive and physical,” Evans said. “He’s a dream kid to coach. He’s a big guy that can move. On offense, he has great hands and an understanding on how to get open. He’s more of a physical and blocking tight end that can catch. He does everything.”