PSU's Redshirt Watch (Part III)

We have compiled another set of progress reports on more Nittany Lion redshirt freshmen, making up the third part of our "Redshirt Watch" report. So far, this series has looked at some of the Penn State redshirt freshmen who are reportedly ready to contribute in 2005. This time we look at some of the offensive linemen coming off their redshirt freshman season to see how they progressed in 2004.

Redshirt freshmen are essentially a second recruiting class for a program, a group that has been kept under wraps since it stepped on campus during this past off-season. Given that these players have not had the opportunity to contribute and have had a season to brush up their skills and conditioning, there should be a lot of excitement around them and what they can potentially contribute in 2005.

Yet the buzz around the current recruiting class typically overshadows the news about these redshirt freshmen. So we thought this was the perfect time to remind people about the terrific prospects who are already on campus working out with the team.

Greg Harrison: Though Harrison was redshirted, some felt he had the ability to make the two-deep roster this past season. Throughout the preseason and early season, Harrison was reportedly getting reps at the center spot, backing up E.Z. Smith at times. Though he reportedly adjusted well to the spot, he later shifted to the right tackle position, where he saw most of his practice reps throughout the remainder of the season.

Harrison apparently picked up the tackle position fairly quickly, and has reportedly done well overall with the move. Many of the comments about Harrison center on his attitude and discipline. He is said to be a standout in workouts and drills, and constantly seeking feedback on his technique and approach to the game in order to improve.

Observers have commented that Harrison is the most likely young offensive lineman who could make an immediate impact this year. He is nimble, aggressive and reportedly has good "pop" off the blocks. He also is said to have a good, strong base. He has apparently been working on his leverage technique to open up holes on shifts and hold his blocks better in passing situations.

Wyatt Bowman: Some have referred to Bowman as the most "underrated" young offensive lineman in the program. Word around him is that he has a good size and strength combination, coupled with decent speed off the snap. Bowman (right, Bowman Family) is also being lauded for his attitude, being called a player who is continually trying to learn and improve and "tries to get the details perfect in his game."

He has reportedly shown some solid ability to drive defensive ends outward in drills and also is said to have a good grasp of the blocking schemes and shifts the line incorporates. Bowman was reportedly was running third team when he got on campus, but moved to the scout squad when it was decided he would redshirt. He is said to likely be focused on the use of his feet and hands when it comes to blocking this spring.

Gerald Cadogan: Cadogan is said to be a "consistent" lineman who has sound fundamentals all around. Based on conversations we have had with observers, Cadogan (left, Portsmouth HS) has a good frame and size but will likely need to focus on increasing his muscle mass to enhance his power if he wants to surge into an impact spot this coming year.

Like many of the young linemen, Cadogan reportedly had to develop discipline on avoiding holds. He also must focus on setting his base on a block and having the ability to hold it longer.

He is described as a "quiet player who has a good set of fundamentals." It seems as if he would be served well, though, if he unleashed his attitude a little more, with one comment being, "he needs to play angry more."

Trent Varva: At around 6-foot-2, 322 pounds, the feeling seems to be that Varva is running a bit big to play the center position. The focus around winter workout sessions will be to bring his weight down a bit to increase his mobility and quickness off the snap.

A three-year starter at Lake Orion High and considered one of the top lineman in Michigan last year, Varva's (right, MI Preps) most impressive trait is said to be his power off the line. Aside from this, it has been said he has displayed some of the best footwork among the young linemen in last year's class.

Like Cadogan, Varva is described as a "silent force" who is "quiet in the huddle, but allows his play to speak for him." He could make the offensive line battles interesting if he tackles the winter and spring sessions head on.

Catch Part I and Part II of our "Redshirt Watch."

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