This was touched on a bit by Brian's Spring Ball post, but I think it's woth its own interesting discussion. What are everyone's expectations of this year's Redshirt Freshman? Here is a handy list that I got from TTB (http://touchthebanner.blogspot.com/2013/03/2013-scholarship-count.html):
RB Drake Johnson
OL Blake Bars
OL Ben Braden
OL Kyle Kalis
OL Erik Magnuson
WR Jehu Chesson
DE Matt Godin
DT Willie Henry
DE Tom Strobel
DE Chris Wormley
LB Kaleb Ringer
S Jeremy Clark
S Allen Gant
Certainly some of these guys are going to need to play large roles on this year's team. What are your thoughts on the top handful? What about a ranking?
Some of my thoughts, but not necessarily a ranking.
- Kyle Kalis - I'm guessing we all have him at or near the top of the list. We need to replace all 3 interior OL starters, and he's the best bet to be one of them. Most have him slated for LG.
- Drake Johnson - There was praise coming from the coaches last year, and the new Kenny Demens comments add further evidence. Drake was a monster in HS. Fitz's future is uncertain. The true freshmen (Green/Smith/Shallman) will only have a few weeks on campus before the season starts. Rawls is uninspiring. I say Johnson has a real opportunity for some minutes.
- Jehu Chesson - We're in dire need for someone to step up outside to complement Jeremy Gallon. We don't have much to go on for Chesson, other than HS. What does it mean that he redshirted and Darboh didn't? Is it just to create one class of separation between the two? Is Darboh 'more ready' than Chesson? Etc.
- Chris Wormley - Before his injury, there were expectations that he'd fill a big role last year. Mattison likes to rotate DL, so we'll likely play the best 6 or 8 guys. The depth chart at SDE is uncertain, and Wormley could certainly factor in there.
- Jeremy Clark / Allen Gant - We don't really know how the safety position will shake out this year with Kovac's departure. We certainly need a smart guy back there to be the captain of the secondary. Some think that Gordon will move to SS, freeing up his FS spot. What does it mean that Jarrod Wilson played last year and these other two didn't? Maybe simply because he enrolled early...
What do you think? If you think Kalis is first, then try to give another guy or two that's high up there :)