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A Breakdown of the O-Lines of Stanford's Five Pac-12 North Opponents From Scout.com's Experts

Stanford will be the only Pac-12 North team to replace three starters. How are the other lines in the Pac-12 looking?

Pac-12 North O-Line Report

 

With seven of the Pac-12’s teams starting first-year quarterbacks this year, the offensive lines of each team are as good a place to start as any when handicapping the division races this season. As part of our 2016 Preview Series, we present a look at Stanford’s Pac-12 North opponents.  Many thanks to Scout’s Pac-12 North contributors Steve Summers, Chris Fetters, Barry Bolton, Ryan Gorcey, and Beaver Playbook for their participation.

 

Oregon Ducks:

 

From Steve Summers:

 

1. Personnel Losses?

The Ducks lost five linemen from last year's squad but only two were starters. OT Tyler Johnstone and C Matt Hagerty. They also lost back up Matt Pierson and Haniteli Lousi, who played significant minutes, plus freshman Braden Eggert who medically retired.

2. Projected starting 5 (along with class)

Starters this season: OT junior Terrell Crosby, OL senior Cameron Hunt, C RFr Jake Hanson, OL RJr Evan Voeller. The last position will likely be either RFr Shane Lemieux or RFr Calvan Throckmorton. RJr Jake Pisarck and RJr Doug Brenner will also see playing time. RFr Zach Okun is the back up center but is also a player that will rotate into other positions. I think the Ducks will likely play these nine guys significant minutes in a rotation.

3. Position of greatest strength

This is a very talented offensive line and the strength is its quickness, discipline and  ability to get out in front to block for the running game.

4. Position of greatest concern

The center position is the position that has the least game experience though Hanson has been compared to former All-Pac-12 and current Chicago Bear Hroniss Grasu.

5. Confidence level about depth?

This is the deepest offensive line the Ducks have had since playing in the National Championship game.

6. Where does this position group rank on your team from strongest to biggest area of concern?

This group is down the list in terms of having a concern. Quarterback, linebacker and defensive line and secondary have more concerns, so there isn't much of a concern at all about the offensive line. This is the kind of line the Ducks have had in all those Rose and Fiesta Bowl teams as well as the BCS Championship and NC Championship games the Ducks played in.

I don't think you can accuse this unit as being in the 500-Club (meaning they each bench 500+ pounds) and I doubt that many bench more than 405. However they squat a lot and are very flexible and quick.

 

Oregon State Beavers

 

From Beaver Playbook:

 

1. Personnel Losses? Josh Mitchell (C) and Isaac Seumalo

2. Projected starting 5 (along with class)

LT: Sean Harlow (SR)

LG: Fred Lauina (JR)

C: Yanni Demogerontas (SO)

RG: Gavin Andrews (SR)

RT: Dustin Stanton (SR)

3. Position of greatest strength

Tackle is probably the strongest on the line, however experience drops off tremendously from the starters.  The young back-ups at tackle, Blake Brandel (RFr), Trent Moore (SO) and Robert Moore (SO) have garnered praise from the coaching staff and junior Will Hopkins has also seen playing time.

4. Position of greatest concern

With the graduation of four year starter Josh Mitchell, center is a huge question mark heading into the season.  The latest depth chart has sophomore Yanni Demogerontas listed at the #1 spot, but he does not have any significant game experience.

5. Confidence level about depth?

The offseason and recruiting efforts have focused on getting guys who are ready to play as soon as possible on the offensive line.  They have worked really hard in the weight room and currently the lightest guy on the line is 293 and that is a true freshman walk-on.  The line has size and has now built a comfort level with offensive line coach TJ Woods.  Depth is always a question, and while the two-deep across the board has some youth, each of these players is well versed to play other positions on the line if need be, so shuffling is never out of the question.

6. Where does this position group rank on your team from strongest to biggest area of concern?

If offensive line wasn’t so important to the offense in general, they’d probably be a little stronger.  Right now I have them third strongest for the team behind wide receiver (strongest) and running backs.  Quarterbacks lack depth and the defense as a whole is very young.

 

Washington Huskies

 

From Chris Fetters:

 

1. Personnel Losses? - UW lost one senior, center Siosifa Tufunga. They also lost left guard Dexter Charles, but that was before the season started.

 

2. Projected starting 5 (along with class) - Left tackle Trey Adams (true sophomore), left guard Jake Eldrenkamp (senior), center Coleman Shelton (junior), right guard Shane Brostek (senior), right tackle Kaleb McGary (sophomore).

 

3. Position of greatest strength - The two tackle positions are where the true talents are, but the experience is inside.

 

4. Position of greatest concern - The two guard positions. Plenty of time at UW, but not a ton of starts between the two.

 

5. Confidence level about depth? - Decent. They have three backup offensive linemen in Andrew Kirkland, Matt James and Jesse Sosebee that have starts, so they do have players that won't be thrown into the fire if needed.

 

6. Where does this position group rank on your team from strongest to biggest area of concern? - It's about in the middle. There's enough talent they should do well, but they aren't necessarily considered a strength of the team, like the defensive units, for example.

 

Washington State Cougars

 

From Barry Bolton:

 

1. Personnel Losses?

LT Joe Dahl, LG Gunnar Eklund

2. Projected starting 5 (along with class)

LT Andre Dillard R-So., LG Cody O’Connell R-Jr., C Riley Sorenson Sr., RG Eduardo Middleton R-Sr., RT Cole Madison R-Jr.

3. Position of greatest strength

Sorenson is among the Pac-12’s best and should get a lot more attention in the media this season. His ability to protect the QB is outstanding.

4. Position of greatest concern

Replacing the left side. The good news for Cougar fans is after 15 spring practices, Mike Leach said he believes the o-line can be as good or better this season as it was in 2015 when WSU went 9-4 and beat Miami in the Sun Bowl.

5. Confidence level about depth?

This is the biggest question mark on the o-line from our chair – unproven depth. The starting five look solid, and what WSU needs is for players like redshirt freshmen Cedric Bigge-Duren and Noah Osur-Myers and others to show they’re ready and to push the starters in fall camp.

6. Where does this position group rank on your team from strongest to biggest area of concern?

If WSU can stay healthy up front on the line, it’s one of the stronger position groups. Dillard has a chance to be special and O’Connell was solid this spring. But if injuries hit, some of the youth will have to grow up quickly.  

 

California Golden Bears

 

From Ryan Gorcey:

 

1. Personnel Losses?

Cal lost just one lineman: Jordan Rigsbee, a four-year starter who signed with the Carolina Panthers as an undrafted free agent.

 

2. Projected starting 5 (along with class)

RS Jr. Aaron Cochran LT

SR Chris Borrayo LG

RS Sr Jeremiah Stuckey (Texas A&M transfer) C

JR Dwayne Wallace (JuCo transfer) RG

RS Sr Steven Moore RT

 

3. Position of greatest strength

You've got two tackles with three-plus seasons total of starting experience, so you'd think that's where the strength is, but honestly, the interior is going to be hard to beat. Stuckey brings a complete knowledge of Jake Spavital's offense, and though he didn't practice with the team this spring, he comes in as a ready-made starting center who doesn't need any transition time, like Dominic Granado or Addison Ooms would. Those two guys now back up both guard spots, which are occupied by two-year starter Chris Borrayo (who also started half of his true freshman year), and JuCo transfer Dwayne Wallace, who brings tackle size to the interior, and all but won the right guard spot in spring.

 

4. Position of greatest concern

I'd say right tackle, but it's really not so much a concern so much as I'm just not as sold on Moore as I am on the other four spots. He's a veteran tackle, a returning starter, and is better at the right than he was at the left, but I like Cochran more than him, just based on pure projectability (I think Cochran can be an NFL tackle).

 

5. Confidence level about depth?

I love the depth on the line. Semisi Uluave got a lot of run last year on the interior, and behind Wallace, he's also a guy who brings tackle size to the interior (6-5, 330). Left guard, that's probably where I'm not completely sold on the depth, with former DT Chris Palmer and J.D. Hinnant behind Borrayo, but I think you'd sooner see Dominic Granado or Addison Ooms move over to a guard spot, or Uluave (he'd probably be the third guard at this point), so that makes me feel a bit better in terms of real-world depth chart than the one released by the program (which also didn't include Stuckey at center, despite the fact that OL coach Brandon Jones told me he'll start there). The tackle depth, I think, is also solid, but there's a step back from Moore and Cochran when you're looking at Patrick Mekari and Kamryn Bennett. That said, I love Mekari. He's gotten so much bigger, stronger and longer, and got a lot of run last year as a true freshman. Vincent Johnson got a lot of run each of the last two years at both tackle spots, so I'm happy with that depth, too.

 

6. Where does this position group rank on your team from strongest to biggest area of concern?

Without any reservation, this is the strongest unit, by far, on both sides of the ball. It's ahead of the running backs, in my mind, and you're talking about a group that's bringing back it's three most productive players from last season.


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