'06 Inventory: Defensive Line

BF.com continues its postseason look at the 2006 football team with the defensive ends and tackles.

Defensive Tackles

The roster (4) Losses (2)
  • Senior Ben Siegert
  • Junior Curtis Coker
  • Sophomore Pernell Booth
  • Redshirt junior William Vea
  • Sir Henry Anderson
  • Alvin Smith
Current Verbals (2) Need (2)
  • Freshman Michael Hunt
  • Junior Ismail Abdunafi
  • Two

The outlook -
Sir Henry Anderson and Alvin Smith will be sorely missed.  They helped Oregon State rank first in the conference in stopping the run while both provided experienced leadership.  Despite losing Anderson and Smith the Beavers retain Curtis Coker and Ben Siegert who both received significant playing time in 2005.

The coaches also redshirted junior college transfer William Vea and expect him to compete for a starting spot.  Pernell Booth will be in his third year in the system and is due to make an impact.  Coker, Vea and Booth must work hard in the off season to say in shape and come prepared for spring ball.

Help is also needed from the junior college ranks as depth is a serious concern if one of the players gets injured or does not perform as well as expected.  The coaches could also try an offensive lineman or two, perhaps one of the freshmen, at the tackle position.


Spring ball -
Hopefully the coaches won't have to worry about getting the players in shape.  If the players can hit the ground running, it will help tremendously with their and the defense's development.  Coker and Siegert are the front runners for the starting spots, but Vea and Booth will have a shot to take a starting spot away.  It really doesn't matter who the starters are as all four players will see significant time in 2006. 

Riley has talked about moving to a 3-4 set and with depth concerns at tackle it would be a logical move.  If a 3-4 is implemented the team is plenty deep and can keep the players fresh. The Beavers also may receive an additional boost from four star JC defensive tackles Ismail Abdunafi who says he will lace it up for the Beavers in the spring. If Abdunafi qualifies and is as advertised he could make a weak part of the team strong.


Keep your eye on - Curtis Coker.  You've read it here before, but the coaches like Coker and now it is his time to shine in a starting role, but he must earn it.


Defensive Ends

The roster (5) Losses (1)
  • Junior Jeff Kruskamp
  • Junior Joe Rudulph
  • Junior Joe Lemma
  • Junior Jeff Van Orsow
  • Sophomore Victor Butler
  • Jeremy Weldon
  • Derek Hall
Current Verbals (4) Need (0)
  • Junior Dorian Smith
  • Junior Keith Robertson
  • Freshman Marquez Herrod
  • Junior Alex Fa'agai
  • None

The outlook -
The most underachieving unit in 2005 returns all of its starters and receives a shot in the arm from a very talented recruiting class. The ends were virtually nonexistent as the two starters, Jeff Van Orsow and Joe Lemma, tallied three less tackles, 5.5 less tackles for loss and and nine less sacks then Bill Swancutt did by himself in 2004.

Both starting end spots are up for grabs. Neither Van Orsow or Lemma have a quick first step and neither possesses the moves needed to get by their defender. Van Orsow has the best upside though as he grabbed two picks in zone coverage. Each is better suited for backup roles and could excel if the JUCO transfers live up to the hype.

Joe Rudulph turned in a quiet year with just 15 tackles, but he did not receive a lot of playing time. Freshman Victor Butler played primarily on special teams showing good drive and strength. Rudulph and Butler each will have a chance to get into the rotation. To be honest, Jeff Kruskamp doesn't have what it takes to be an effective Pac-10 defensive end.

Riley is putting together a very strong defensive end recruiting class. Junior college transfers Dorian Smith and Alex Fa'agai are expected to compete immediately for playing time. Both reportedly have superb quickness off the line which is just what the Beavers need. Depending on how the returning players and transfers develop, junior Keith Robertson and freshman Marquez Herod could also compete for playing time although at least one, if not both, will redshirt.


Spring ball -
The coaches will be pretty much starting from step one as they try and find the players to fill the two end spots. Reps, reps and more reps will be the name of the game as the coaches try and narrow it down midway through the month.

If the transfers come in and perform as expected Smith and Fa'agai will grab the starting spots with Rudulph and Van Orsow as the main backups. The transfers provide the speed while the current Beavers provide the strength. An effective combination which could make 2006 a memorable year.


Keep your eye on - The JUCO transfers. The defense needs Smith and Fa'agai to come in and make an impact. If their is no improvement from the ends from a year ago it could be another long season.

Next up - Safeties and Cornerbacks

Previous - QB and RB | OL and WR | TE and K

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