If the old phrase "there is strength in numbers" is true then the job has become easier for Oklahoma State offensive line coach Joe Wickline. Wickline returns a rather unique 3.5 starters from last season and one of those starters is likely to move from guard to tackle.
For the first time in many years it appears OSU will have enough quality offensive linemen for a solid two deep on the line, even an extra player that is not just a name in there but a player that Wickline feels can go out and do the job. It is impossible to tell how the final offensive line depth chart will look because Wickline is a coach that loves to experiment with different combinations working until the deadline to come up with the best possible mix.
One player that won't be moving anywhere is center David Washington. The junior from Guthrie has become a standout and may be good enough to garner post-season honors and get a chance to play on Sundays. Washington has improved dramatically each year as a starter. He will now be backed up by Andrew Lawrence.
The reason Lawrence is at center is because Andrew Lewis, who has improved each year since arriving, is now penciled in at left guard as David Koenig is moving to right tackle. Koenig has been considered the best offensive lineman on the team since the departure of now Super Bowl champion Charlie Johnson to the NFL's Colts. Koenig plays with a mean streak and rarely misses an assignment or fails to complete his block. Koenig will be backed up at right tackle by Stillwater native Jacob Secrest, while the young Lewis, who reminds the staff a little of a young Koenig, will be backed up by Michael Booker, another young lineman that Wickline is high on.
Last season Brady Bond and true freshman at the time Russell Okung shared the right tackle position. Bond started early in the season and then an ankle injury against Texas A&M forced Okung into duty and he played so well he never gave the position up. This spring both move over to left tackle to battle for the starting position. Bond has an uphill battle because now not only has Okung gained experience but he too has been through a Rob Glass off-season program. It should be very competitive between those two this spring and that will only push them both to improve.
Finally, at right guard it looks like Steven Denning will get his chance to start. He was close last year. Denning is getting a run for strongest player on the team from Noah Franklin, who is now back on the offensive side of the ball after getting a try on defense. Franklin is set to battle Denning for right guard with talented redshirt freshman Trent Perkins there too.
Of course everything I wrote here is subject to change, except for Washington at center, because Wickline may decide he has another combination that will work better. It would be nice for it to be solidified coming out of spring, but you'll know the offensive line for sure two weeks before the Cowboys go to Georgia to open the season.
2007 Oklahoma State Football Spring Offensive LIne Depth Chart
76 Russell Okung, 6-5, 290, So., Fort Bend (Bush), Texas
60 Brady Bond, 6-6, 285, So., Garber, Okla.
54 Andrew Lewis, 6-5, 290, So., Joplin, Mo.
78 Michael Booker, 6-3, 310, RS Fr., Paris (North Lamar), Texas
63 David Washington, 6-3, 310, Jr., Guthrie, Okla.
52 Andrew Lawrence, 6-4, 305, So., Dallas (Paulding Co.), Ga.
65 Steve Denning, 6-5, 295, Jr., Southhaven, Miss./NW Mississippi C.C.
77 Noah Franklin, 6-5, 310, So., Vinita, Okla.
71 Trent Perkins, 6-5, 295, RS Fr., Alice, Texas
61 David Koenig, 6-5, 290, Sr., Cape Coral, Fla.
57 Jacob Secrest, 6-5, 290, RS Fr., Stillwater, Okla.
Spring Football Preview: Offensive Line
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