BF.C Spring Preview: OL

THERE MAY BE FOUR returning starters on the Beaver o-line but there are loads of unknowns up front headed into spring ball. Only one of those four returning starters will line up at the same position, but that's only the beginning.

How will the offensive line do in opening holes for a new running back after struggling in that task with Quizz Rodgers last season?

How will the o-line fare when running the newest wrinkle in the OSU playbook -- the zone-read option?

Can the line, which gave up an ugly 35 sacks last year, protect Ryan Katz better?

Spring ball, which kicks off Monday, should start to answer some of those questions up front.

The starting o-line heading into spring ball features LT Mike Remmers, LG Joshua Andrews, C Grant Johnson, RG Burke Ellis, RT Michael Philipp.

Not one of those players is listed above 300 pounds, though a pair, Remmers and Philipp, are at 299 and 298, respectively, and four of the five are 290 or greater.

That might not necessarily be a bad thing, though, as line coach Mike Cavanaugh likes and has found success with smaller, athletic players.

The flip side to that coin is that the Beavs looked physically outmatched at times last year up front.

The answer might be as simple as this: execute better up front, and it won't matter that you're 295, or 325.

Among those who could push the starters, Darryl Jackson is a true freshman but he's getting an early start, having arrived at OSU in January. He's listed at 6-6, 314 pounds.

Geoff Garner, a 307-pound sophomore is listed behind Remmers at left tackle and long-in-arriving Mau Nomani is also in the fold (6-4, 327). Grant Enger (6-5, 279) and Colin Lyons (6-3, 275) are listed behind Andrews at left guard.

Roman Sapolu might be a little light still to challenge Johnson at center, he's listed at 266 pounds, but the redshirt freshman looks to be on the right path.

Michael Lamb, Michael Beaton and Rory Ross are listed behind Ellis at right guard, while Colin Kelly backs up Philipp. Keep an eye on Kelly, he could push for time if not at tackle, then at guard.

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