I've been doing a series of posts on the state of the 2008 UMass football team. This is the last post of the series and we take a look at the OL for 2008 and try to guess what the coaching staff has in store for us.
Remember I have no special inside information.
Freshman are green.
Sophomores are orange
Juniors are blue
Senior are red
I'm working out of the UMass depth chart for the Hofstra game. Teams are only allowed to dress 60 players for the playoffs, so the depth chart for the playoffs may have been different. Note that the class of the player is for fall of 2008 not their current status.
According to the last regular season depth chart:
LT Vladimir Ducasse Junior
----Ben Coblyn Senior
-------John Ihne Sophomore
---- Biff Gotteher Redshirt Senior
RT Sean Calicchio Redshirt Senior
----Biff Gottener Redshirt Senior
Other offensive linemen (not including this year's recruits) are Josh Samuda, Tim Nolan, Mike Binkoski, Michael Boyle, Justin Sawicki , Chauncey Incarnato and Brian Ostaszewski.
Discussion: The offensive line is the big (along with WR) rebuilding area for 2008. The offensive line was hit with injuries in training camp last year and depth was problem all year.
John Ihne and Ben Coblyn saw quite a bit of playing time. I read in one of last years reports that if UMass had to break a redshirt it would have been Tim Nolan. Which, presumably, means he was the most advanced of the true freshmen at that time.
I would think that Coach Brown would try to redshirt this year's OL recruits if at all possible. Generally, an eighteen-year-old is not physically ready to play in the line against twenty-three year old players who have been on a college weight program for five years.
Most OL can play more than one position. I would think that the center and both guard positions are open at this time. Until spring and fall training camps are finished, I don't think there is any clear leaders. We will have more depth this year and last year's freshman should be in the mix to start.