According to one source, "Matt Roth should be expected to land one sack in every game this fall. If he had picked up the system better at Mike linebacker; he'd be an All-American there as well. But his potential at defensive end is outright scary!" Ready to fire up the Hawkeye defense with his new fireball tattoo, Matt is likely to receive the highest honors this fall of any Hawkeye defender. Ohio State's Will Smith is earning early recognition as the top defensive end in the Big Ten. But the media will learn soon enough that Mr. Roth might be ready to surpass Mr. Smith's reputation all the way to Washington.
Last spring, Antwan Allen began to receive the praise as being the top cover corner on the squad. Not to disparage the abilites of Allen, Jovon Johnson has come to the forefront. Having more strength than Allen, Johnson will have more confidence and will be given more freedom to play closer to the line against receivers. He has great ability in turning his hips, and will likely be paired up with the top receiver of the opposing team all fall. Expect him to increase his production of four interceptions last fall.
Jason has already begun his work to become the #2 quarterback. It should not take long before the change is officially made on the depth chart, but the staff will wait to see his performance in scrimmages and handling the first team defense. The staff is mulling the option of using a two quarterback system this fall, and will only consider doing so if Jason was able to move clearly ahead as the #2 quarterback. Right now, it is becoming pretty evident he will be ready to do so.
Sean Considine remains a favorite of the coaching staff and Phil Parker. While Sean has continued to play well and is very intelligent out on the field, Chris Smith has really started to become a factor. After having a good off season in the weight room, Chris has added even more athleticism. Being a previous starter, Chris has a good feel for the system, and good range to cover the field. It may not be long before Coach (Phil) Parker will have to make a tougher decision than he expected in naming a starter.
After having a slow start in the beginning of his career last fall, Edmond has really started to show flashes of the player the staff viewed in high school. Standing at 5'11 and weighing a solid 220, Edmond has the toughness, including a bench over 400. However, his speed may be his biggest asset in his quest to be an impact linebacker. Right now, he is likely to be named the #2 "Will" linebacker, and should receive his share of playing time this fall if he continues his hard work.