Practice Tour: Russell Bodine

FORK UNION, Va. --- After starting both his sophomore and junior seasons at center, North Carolina commitment Russell Bodine has been moved to guard for his senior season.

"We need a trapper and Russell is our best pull guy," Fork Union Military Academy head coach Mickey Sullivan said. "He's quicker than the guy we had there before. It's not a move that ‘Ok, you did badly at center.' It's just a move that will probably make us better."

Bodine, a 6-foot-4, 275-pounder, is part of an offensive line that also includes Virginia Tech verbal commitments and four-star prospects Nick Acree and Mark Shuman.

"That group was our leaders last year," Sullivan said. "This year they have to be again. We have three Division I recruits – how many guys are you going to have with that? That doesn't happen often in high school – maybe a couple schools in the country. So those guys have to be our best players… The key to our success is going to be how much better they make everybody else."

Unlike last season, FUMA expects to have a reliable passing game this fall, but will still remain a run-dominant team.

"I'm not dumb, in crunch time you go with what you do best," Sullivan said. "And what we do best right now is hand the ball off and run it inside the tackles."

Bodine will also start on defense at tackle.

"Russell is a big strong kid that's very aggressive, has great feet and hands," Sullivan said. "He's going to be a run stopper. Russell is probably our quickest, strongest, nastiest person inside."

Despite posting a 4-6 record last season, the returning talent has produced high expectations.

"We really don't want to set expectations too high," Bodine said. "We just want to take it one game at a time. We're going to try to make it through the season and to the playoffs and go from there."

The potential is there. FUMA was the only team to defeat a talented Woodberry Forest (Va.) squad last fall.

Before arriving at FUMA a couple weeks ago, Bodine would keep up with UNC, regularly. Thus, he's fairly familiar with the depth issues along the offensive line.

"I definitely want to get in there and play," Bodine said. "Playing time is important – nobody wants to go somewhere where you're going to sit on the bench."

Helping him follow the Tar Heels is Sam Pittman, UNC's offensive line coach.

"He said ‘You're going to have to come in and compete for a spot,'" Bodine said. "They're shallow, especially at center."

Bodine plans to attend several UNC games this season, but isn't yet sure which ones.

Russell Bodine Profile

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