August 17th, 2016 at 10:15 AM ^

I see it as both...

Half-full because we have someone who could potentially step in and give us valuable contribution. 

Half-empty because there was no one else on the roster that could step up instead of a true freshman. I don't wanna blame Brady Hoke for the depth/development issues he left, especially on the OL, but if the shoe fits....

I do think Bredeson will end up starting at some point this year, but not to replace Newsome. Kalis would be my guess if I were a betting man. 


August 17th, 2016 at 10:54 AM ^

If you consider the hole RR left and that no OL were recruited at all in 2010, plus 3 of Hoke's recruits didn't pan out for non-performance issues (Bosch had drinking issues, Fox was injured, LTT. . . you know the story), it's actually an accomplishment to get a starting 5 like we have and had last year. Granted, it took Harbaugh and Drevno to get those guys up to par, but Hoke did recruit the position fairly well.


August 17th, 2016 at 11:29 AM ^

No, you can't blame Hoke for neglecting to recruit the OL, he did get highly rated guys. But my point was more that he wasn't very good at developing those guys nor was he good at future roster management. Hence, why the dept behind the starters is very thin and very young. 

I Like Burgers

August 17th, 2016 at 12:14 PM ^

Trying to see through my own Harbaugh colored glasses here, but it seems like one of the main differences between Hoke and Harbaugh's OL recruiting is that Harbaugh takes guys that fit a very specific idea of what he wants in a lineman -- especially when it comes to the players rated lower by the services.

Hoke seemed to take a lot more fliers on guys that either had red flags (Fox with an injury) or needed tons of development (LTT and JBB) and he never had the system to actually provide support and development for them.  Plus, he only took 2 OL in 2014 which was a problem that was compounded when so many of the 2013 recruits didn't pan out.

So while you're always going to have high-rated guys like Kalis or Kugler that don't quiet pan out the way you think they will, you can't afford to miss on your "project" players since they are the ones that make up the base of your OL depth.  To me, that's where Hoke screwed up and created depth issues.


August 17th, 2016 at 1:31 PM ^

While I think there's something to the "project OLineman" idea, I think it's more of a "bloody-minded universe" thing. LTT was supposedly coming on and would have likely been the starter at LT this year had he not committed a really dumb crime. Fox's injury was one that normally heals up and just, for whatever reason, didn't. And the other player turned out to have some significant psychological issues. 

If anything, the fall-off of oline recruiting in the late RR years meant that Hoke had to hit on an inordinately high number of Oline prospects and that they had to develop more quickly than normally expected.


August 17th, 2016 at 2:02 PM ^

Here's Hoke's OL recruiting:


Chris Bryant - 3* - Career ending injury

Jack Miller (RR) - 3* - Starter


Kyle Kalis - 4* - Starter

Erik Magnuson - 4* - Starter

Ben Braden - 3* - Starter

Blake Bars - 3* - Never panned out


Patrick Kugler - 4* - Key backup (?)

Kyle Bosch - 4* - Off field issues

David Dawson - 4* - Key backup

Chris Fox - 4* - Career ending injury

Logan Tuley-Tillman - 4* - Off field issues

Dan Samuelson - 3* - Never panned out 


Mason Cole - 4* - Starter

Juwann Bushell-Beaty - 3* - ???


Grant Newsome - 4* - Looking like Starter

Jon Runyan Jr - 3* - ???

Aside from the starter level guys needing an extra year or two and a new OL coach to get to anywhere near their potential, there's not a lot ot fault there. Fox got hurt after he committed and Hoke, to his credit, stood by the offer. '14 was a tiny class because of the huge '12 and '13 classes, so 2 OL is actually about right given other needs. The only guys that missed completely were 3* guys that, well, that just happens with the lower rated guys. 


In fact, I'm not even convinced that we have that much of a depth issue at all here. We can suffer 2, maybe 3 injuries on the line and probably be ok. Kugler and Dawson have both looked decent to good in scrimmage, even if they couldn't push past the starters yet. If Bredeson is as good as advertised, then you have another option before things start getting hairy. That's a situation pretty much every college team finds itself in.





August 17th, 2016 at 12:38 PM ^

Submarine hype and coachspeak caveat aside, it really seems like 2 out of my 3 big concerns this year are already being mitigated:


  • QB sounds like it's a battle, but it's a battle because both are at  least solid/competent and the issue is which one to go with, as opposed to having both really struggling with nobody being even a competent starter.  Silver lining is that if the QB battle is realy that close, our back-up situaiton is not a major drop off if our starter somehow gets hurt.
  • Our worry about OL depth is already potentially mitigated by Bredesen.  Even if he doesn't displace Newsome or Kalis as a starter, we are no longer looking at death on the OL just because we can't identify an adequate 6th man in case of injury.  It does sound like we have a "lost generation" of OL guys.  The LTT, JBB, of the world won't see playing time & it's likely to go right from Sr/5th years to next year RS Freshmen and Soph. with the exception of Mason Cole.  But the point is with Bredesen and some of the young guys it seems like "the cavalary has arrived" and we won't be 100% depleted at OL next year once these guys graduate.
  • That only leaves my 3rd (and least imporant) worry, which is a weak LB corps.  Haven't heard much about it so far this camp, but considering the dominant DL and the great secondary we have, this can largely be papered-over if we don't suffer major injuries on the defense this year.


August 17th, 2016 at 10:42 AM ^

Yes, for the most part. That's why our left tackle is moving to center this fall (something Alabama did just a few years ago). If your 5 best are all lean 6'7" dudes, then maybe not in that case, but typically that is true.

Guys on the OL are versatile than many think. How often do we hear "why is he playing OT, I thought he was recruited as a guard?" These guys are all huge, athletic dudes and they can move around if they need to. This is another reason it's beneficial to recruit versatile athletes on the OL.

A Fan In Fargo

August 17th, 2016 at 5:02 PM ^

You take 7 of the top 30 offensive tackles in american high school football and you make them your army. They are the best athletes for lineman and can move and defend guys like Bosa. That's the guys you want pancaking linebackers and safeties all across the board. Me likey!!