How many true freshmen will see the field?

Submitted by robbyt003 on July 17th, 2012 at 5:08 PM

It's a slow day, and I'm sure everyone is sick of hearing about Penn State, so I figured I'd see what everyone elses input is on this. has an article where they debate how many freshman will see the field this year.  The over/under is 6.  I'm going with the over and predict 9.


Darboh - WR
Chesson - WR
Williams - Blocking TE
Funcess - Hybrid WR/TE
Kalis - OL
Bolden - LB
Norfleet - KR/PR
Wilson - S
EDIT - Pipkins - DT  (duh)



July 17th, 2012 at 5:27 PM ^

I see a potential for Williams to see the field at T.E. if Hoke decides (though it has not been his style so far) to go Maximum Beef Machine on a 4th and Inches play.

turd ferguson

July 17th, 2012 at 5:40 PM ^

I'd be shocked - and it wouldn't bode well for us - if all four true freshmen linebackers see the field this year.  Linebacker is one of our positions of strength (and relative depth).  Seeing RJS would be especially surprising to me.


July 18th, 2012 at 6:42 AM ^

We had essentially the same number of linebackers last year.  Poole redshirted, Paskorz never saw the field, and Mike Jones barely played.  The guys who played last year were Morgan, Hawthorne, Herron, Demens, Jones, Ryan, Cam Gordon, and Beyer.  That's eight.  And I didn't really see a need to rotate in MORE guys.


July 17th, 2012 at 5:38 PM ^

I know we have a lot of bodies at Corner but I have to believe if Richardson has the same type of talent as Countess that he will make his way onto the field at some point.  I think there's a bit of a dropoff after our top 2.


July 17th, 2012 at 5:44 PM ^

Gallon needs to stay healthy and on the field as a WR.  I think Norfleet does have a chance at kick returns this fall because of that.  As long as he is not the freshman version of Gallon who could make catching the ball cleanly rather suspensful.  They'll use Gallon to return kicks when they need sure hands during tight games.


July 17th, 2012 at 7:08 PM ^

Yeah I agree with you on this. It's highly doubtful a true freshman would start the season off returning kicks, especially on the biggest stage against Bama. Gallon needs to stay healthy though. So my guess is that they ease Norfleet into the role to take over for Gallon at some point during the season. 


July 17th, 2012 at 5:45 PM ^

Even though I expect quite a few will play, I like the fact that only 2-3 will play because they have to, and they don't have to start unless there's an injury.  With our OL depth,  Kalis will have to play as the 1st or 2nd (Miller) OL off the bench.  AJ Williams also pretty much has to play if we ever want to play 2 big TEs or if Brandon Moore isn't so good. 

DL is the other spot where a freshman is pretty much required even though you could make the case that Cambell, Black, Roh, Beyer, Clark, Washington and Ash are enough.  Pipkins or Godin/Wormley will play due to the lack of depth combined with their talent.  After that I think that Chesson (or Darboh), Funchess (more as a slot WR), Bolden (or Ross) and Wilson will play because they are just too good.


July 17th, 2012 at 5:46 PM ^

I think one FR WR will play, but I'm kind of unsure which one. Chesson is super skinny, but no more skinny than Roundtree when he played as a FR. Darboh had a shoulder surgery in Dec, and while should be healed, who knows if he'll trust it enough by fall to justify burning a redshirt.


July 17th, 2012 at 6:20 PM ^

Bolden - spot duty behind Demens

Chesson & Darboh - both will play, but I think only one (probably Chesson) will earn anything approaching regular playing time

Kalis - won't start unless there are injuries, but he'll work his way into the rotation

Norfleet - he'll get a KR, maybe PR, duty, and probably some mop-up work

Pipkins - same as Kalis, hopefully won't start but will be in the rotation

Williams - at some point he'll be thrown out there for blocking purposes

+2 unnecessary and unexpected burned redshirts (probably some combination of another LB, a DLinemen, and a DB getting special teams work)


July 17th, 2012 at 7:19 PM ^

I think people are forgetting that behind Craig Roh at SDE,  we have uhhhh garbage... 

I dont see a way that none of Strobel, Godin, or Wormley get on the field next year....


July 17th, 2012 at 8:10 PM ^

not too many will play a lot this year, unless they are needed or really show they should definitely be out there early. At least as far as linemen go I expect to see Pipkins and Kalis playing at the very least. I'd be surprised if Bolden didn't at least get some garbage time play, but I imagine he'll get some more than that. Aside from those guys, maybe Wilson will play some too, and maybe a couple others on special teams. Overall we'll see several I'm sure but I'm hoping they will at least solidly fill the holes they get put into.

Avant's Hands

July 18th, 2012 at 1:44 AM ^

I think two tight ends will definitely be on the field this year, whether they are ready or not. At least one wideout, probably two. Pipkins and a couple LBs. Possibly Wilson at safety. Probably a DE that comes out in garbage time to get 4 snaps and makes all of us shake our heads. And I'm not sure why everyone is having a hard time believing a freshman can return punts. If they're good, they're good. I seem to remember this guy named Steve Breaston making quite the name for himself as a true freshman punt returner. That punt return against Illinois was insane.

ND Sux

July 18th, 2012 at 8:07 AM ^

Kalis - hopefully won't be needed unless there are injuries, but gets experience for next year

Pipkins - legitimate starter by mid season, injuries or not (Mongomery'd)

Bolden - as early enrollee, should be ready to back up Demens if needed

Norfleet - kick returner, possible snaps at slot.  Gallon has punts locked down (!).  Having a true frosh fielding kicks doesn't make me near as nervous as punts - much more pressure.

Given the way this coaching staff recruits, I'm not as concerned about burning redshirts if it becomes necessary.  There will always be quality talent waiting in the wings.  Love that I can type that with confidence. 

Perkis-Size Me

July 18th, 2012 at 8:50 AM ^

I really hope Kalis does not see the field, but maybe it wouldn't hurt if he sees some garbage time against a UMass or Air Force. Still, I'm praying our OLine starters stay healthy. Kalis needs a redshirt. I don't buy into the term college ready for a freshman offensive lineman. Especially when the first game is against Alabama.

Unless Roundtree goes Megatron on everyone's ass, I'm expecting Darboh to see time. He might be interchangeable with Chesson, seeing as how Chesson has the speed.

Bolden wont be able to stay off he field. He will see ST play and some garbage time this year, maybe more if Demens underperforms, but I project Bolden as a starter for the 2013 opener.

Magnuson-same as Kalis.

Pip-he won't be able to stay off the field, whether it's depth issues, BWC doesn't perform, or Pip is as good as advertised. I'd prefer a redshirt, but I wouldn't be surprised if he's named a starter by mid season.

Richardson should redshirt, but once Floyd graduates, the spot opposite Countess is his to lose.

Other than Bolden, I think all our LB recruits should redshirt, which is great. RJS and James Ross look like they will be studs in the years to come.

I don't foresee any DB freshman playing. Kovacs and Gordon should hold down the fort just fine.


July 18th, 2012 at 9:04 AM ^

If you want to groom a cornerback to take over for Floyd, then why don't you want to groom a safety to take over for Jordan Kovacs?  I mean, a veteran like Marvin Robinson could fill Kovacs's spot next year, but the same goes for cornerback (Talbott, Taylor, etc.).  I think there's at least a decent chance that Thomas Gordon moves to SS in 2013 to make room for Jarrod Wilson at FS.  And if that's going to be the case, I would think they would want to get Wilson some reps this season.


July 18th, 2012 at 9:28 AM ^

I usually dont like to do these things but I got this from a friend of a former player. You can take the info or leave it but here are his opinions of the incoming freshman, here goes

Who will play..

Norfleet - not only returns but on offense, ball of muscle and absolutely electric with the ball, compared him to DeAnthony Thomas from Oregon, shorter but thicker. If he was 3 or 4 inches taller he would have been a national recruit

Funchess/ Williams- As others have said, paper thin at TE but Funchess will be more of a WR, Williams can put his hand down and block but needs strength.

LB's -  Bolden will push Demens(and may take over) look out for James Ross as the wildcard here, more speed than any other LB on the roster

Jarrod Wilson - has the chance to be a star, great length, not super fast but covers a lot of ground, good at taking angles

Chesson/Darboh - both will contribute, need to get blocking and playbook down, Chesson can fly

Pipkins,Kalis and Braden were mentioned as pontential to play, To him Wormley was the most impressive looking freshman "the first guy you want off the bus", if he can do it on the field he will be special. I'll post more as I get it