Here is a positional breakdown of the depth chart:
Offensive Line – The Cardinals return 6 regular starters including 5 5th year seniors and 2 4th year juniors adding experience to a deep corp. Back are starting OTs Drake Miller and Steve Bell along with 5th year backup and spot starter Nick Plavchak. On the inside, back are 3 5th year returnees in Jacob Richard at C, Jeremiah Harvey and Jalen Schlachter at OG.
Quarterback – Back is incumbent starter Jack Milas who took over mid-way through his redshirt freshman year before being injured before the season final victory over Bowling Green. Also in the mix are redshirt freshman David Morison and freshman phenom Riley Neal who will do battle for the backup roll.
Running Back – Gone is all-time leading rusher Jahwan Edwards and back up Horactio Banks. That leaves two inexperienced tailbacks and a freshman in the mix. Slated to start will be either speedy multi-positional threat Darian Green or third leading rusher Teddy Williamson. Also set to get some carries is freshman James Gilbert who enrolled early and was able to work out with the team in the spring.
Receiver – The Cardinals return 6 players with game experience a year ago. At the top of the list is Sr. Jordan Williams and Kevonn Mabon. Also returning are Chris Shillings, Corey Lacanaria and Aaron Hepp on the inside and Jordan Hogue on the outside. Redshirt freshman Devin Reece and Sr. Walk-on Cywettnie Brown are also listed as possibilities for playing time.
Defensive Line – Back are 7 players who either started or played significant snaps a season ago along with a big time transfer who will factor into the mix. At the Rush End, Michael Ayers returns for his 5th year and will split time with outside speedster Anthony Winbush. On the Inside, starting DT Darnell Smith returns along with part time starter Kevin Willis. Also factored into the mix is JUCO DT John Whitman. At Nose, back from a season of injury is Carlu Zaramo as well as 5th year player Kennan Noel and spot starter Julian Jackson. At the other DE spot, back is spot starter and rotation player Osa Igbinosun who will do battle with Cincinnati transfer Josh Posley who played well in the spring.
Linebacker – Experience is key for the linebacking corps. Returning are starters Ben Ingle, Zack Ryan and Aaron Taylor. Also returning is spot starter Sean Wiggins and special teams dynamo Stu Stanley. Adding depth are returning 5th year (and formerly injured) players Julian Boyd and Avery Bailey. Rounding out the LB corps is Redshirt Freshman Damon Singleton.
Secondary – The Ball State secondary saw the most rapid change from spring as they lost three players – Dae’Sean Hurley, Roy Denson and Jalen Wyatt – who all chose not to return to school this fall. Back though are 4 players with starting experience in DBs Darius Conaway and Tyree Holder and Safeties Martez Hester and Dedrick Cromartie. Adding depth and pushing for playing time will be So. David Moore, redshirt freshman Quinten Turner, JUCO transfer Corey Hall and true freshmen Armani McNulty and Marc Walton. As Safety, the Cardinals added a big time pick up late in JUCO transfer and former Oregon State signee Terin Solomon along with JUCO transfer Rontrell Peyton and redshirt freshman Lamont McPhatter.