Depth Chart Released

The depth chart is released, and there aren't too many surprises. But it's striking how many freshmen -- both redshirt and true -- are listed on the two deep...

UCLA released its depth chart Thursday and there weren't many surprises. In fact, it was almost exactly has we had anticipated at BRO.

Most significant "surprises," if you can call them that, would be: Steve Morgan listed as the starter over Sean Phillips at defensive tackle, even though the UCLA coaches consider them co-starters; and Alex Potasi, the true freshman offensive lineman listed second on the depth chart behind Bryce Bohlander at left tackle and ahead of redshirt freshman Matt Mosebar.

As expected, the true freshman quarterback Drew Olson is the #2 quarterback. When asked what he thought, Olson broke into a big grin and said, "Very exciting."

Mike McCloskey won the starting center position over Paul Mociler. While Mociler is only listed as the backup center, Head Coach Bob Toledo said that Mociler would also be the one of the first backup options at other positions, like right and left guard. Currently Robert Cleary is listed #2 at left guard and Tyson Clayton #2 at right guard.

Marcedes Lewis is listed as the #2 tight end, due in part to the injury to Keith Carter.

Manuel White is listed as the #1 fullback, due in part to the injury to Pat Norton. Freshman J.D. Groves is currently #2. Ray Cassaday is injured and not listed but Toledo said that Groves would be listed ahead of Cassaday.

At tailback, Akil Harris retains the #1 spot with White behind him. Jason Harrison, as we anticipated is now the #3 guy, followed by Wendell Mathis and Tyler Ebell.

At flanker is Tab Perry, Garrett Lepisto and Jon Dubravac. At split end is Craig Bragg, Ryan Smith and Junior Taylor.

On defense, Ben Emanuel has won the starting strong safety position, as expected. Behind him are listed Jibril Raymo and Jarrad Page as co-second-stringers. Eric McNeal is behind them. Kevin Brant is listed as the backup behind Matt Ware at free safety, but if Ware were injured Emanuel would more than likely step in to the free safety position first.

Joe Hunter has won the open starting cornerback position. But you can almost see matt Clark on his heels on the depth chart. At the other corner, Glenn Ohaeri, as we predicted yesterday, won the #2 spot behind Ricky Manning. Marcus Cassel is behind him.

Spencer Havner is the starter at weakside linebacker with true freshman Wesley Walker behind him. Dennis Link is holding on to the #2 spot at middle linebacker with Justin London listed behind him.

Rusty Willliams is the starter at the one defensive end position, with Mat Ball listed behind him. Asi Faoa is listed as the backup behind Dave Ball at the other DE spot. David Tautofi behind him. Ryan Boschetti backs up Rodney Leisle at defensive tackle.

Tyler Ebell is listed as the #1 punt returner, but Craig Bragg's injury might have contributed to that. At kick-off return is Tab Perry, Akil Harris, Matt Clark and Ricky Manning, in that order.

Five players were left off the depth chart due to injuries: Shane Lehmann, pulled groin; Keith Carter, sprained ankle; Matt Moore, strained knee; Pat Norton, sprained ankle, and Patrick Pierre-Louis, separated shoulder. Toledo said that they expect Lehmann will be able to play against Colorado State. He would then be listed as the #2 right guard. Pat Norton is still questionable and his status is day to day. Keith Carter is doubtful. Matt Moore is out and will almost certainly redshirt. And Pierre-Louis is definitely out.

Perhaps what stands out are the freshman – both redshirt and true – that populate the two deep. Two will start in Mike McCloskey and Spencer Havner. Redshirt freshmen Jason Harrison, Wendell Mathis, Tyler Ebell, Marcus Cassel, Ed Blanton and Robert Cleary could get playing time this year. True freshmen Marcedes Lewis, Drew Olson, Justin London, and Glenn Ohaeri will definitely play and not redshirt, and it's a distinct possibility for Jarrad Page and even J.D. Groves. Most will see time on special teams.

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