The official UMass Athletic Web site has a six-page 2008 Football Season Preview up.
Notes & comments:
"Liam Coen is the best quarterback in UMass football history" said coach Brown. That's quite a statement...
A big cog in the offense seems to be backup QB Scott Woodward. Besides backing up Liam he's the holder on kicks and the backup punter.
At RB it looks like we will have the "lighting & thunder" combo of 5-10 210 pd Tony Nelson and 6-2 245 pd Brandon White.
Good to hear 6-1 230 pd FB Chris Zardas will be ready to go. 6-1 215 pd Emil Iqwenagu will back him up.
Bigger news is that 6-0 200 pd Victor Cruz is expected to start at WR. Cruz was a highly touted recruit who will be in his fourth season with the Minutemen. In 2007, Cruz played in eight games and had one catch for 26 yards.
Take a bow anonymous commenter, who told us 6-2 230 pd Ryan Logan would move to H-Back.
But you didn't say All-conference RT Tackle Sean Calicchio is moving to center. Taking his place at RT will be 6-6 260 pd Rob Getek. Left Guard will be 6-8 296 pd Ben Coblyn. Reading between the lines, it looks like RG is still open.
Brian Ellis will start at SS. At 6-0 210 he's a former LB who played in 11 games in '07 and had 25 tackles. His backup will me 6-0 205 pd Shane Viveiros. Another new face in the two-deep is backup FS Eric Dickson. He played in nine games in 2007 and had five tackles.
A new name in the defense is true freshman Nichlas Haag, who is DB from Bridgton Academy. I don't remember seeing him on previous recruiting lists.
There has always been a lot of comment on the size of our defensive line. Looks like we bulked up for 2007. DE Michael Hansen is 6-2 260 (he was listed as 235 last year). Captain Brandon Collier is now 6-1 280 . Kyle C. Harrington is the NG and is 6-3 280 (up from 256 last year).
Another new recruit is Nicholas Collilouri. He's a 5-11 260 pd DL from Holliston MA. He's apparently a recruited walk-on. Image of him here (sixth image down). Looks like quite a bit of depth on the DL with Shaun Allen, Anthony Monette, JUCO Theluxon Pierre, Bob McLaughlin, Delaware transfer Raymond Jones and RFr Courtney Jackson.
One interesting fact is that Travis Tripucka a defender on the UMass Lax team will contend for the long snapper position. His uncle Mark Tripucka played QB for the Minutemen in the early 70's. Mark was the starting QB in 1974. He went 60-145 817 yards and 6 TD in the old Yankee Conference.
I think this is a good and deep squad. Fall camp opens on August 5th!