FanPost

Looking Ahead: Football Depth Next Season and Beyond - Offense

Bumped. GO BRUINS. -N

As part of my two-part series on looking forward at our football team's depth this season and the two following seasons, this is the section for those wanting a break-down of the offensive side of the ball (which will include our kicker/punter situation simply because a whole special teams section would be kind of dumb, and they technically step on the field on offense).

Anyway, again I think having this kind of information broken down will give us some perspective to gauge how our recruiting efforts are shaping up, see where we're going to need to get help down the line, and touch off a bit of discussion.

Also, this run-through is a bit more broken down than the defensive run-through simply because the offense doesn’t lend itself to a neat, three-part grouping as the defense does.

And once again, to make it a bit easier to sort, I've broke each group up into separate block quote sections:

OFFENSE

QUARTERBACK

'08-'09

QB1: Ben Olson (RS SR)
QB2: Kevin Craft (RS JR)
QB3: Chris Forcier (RS FR)

Reserves: Osaar Rasshan (RS JR); Patrick Cowan (RS SR – Out for Season)

Incoming Freshmen/Transfers: Kevin Craft (RS JR, JC Transfer - 5 stars by Scout); Nick Crissman (4 stars, #9 by Scout); Kevin Prince (3 stars, #40 by Scout)

Notes: Patrick Cowan is out for the season and will apply for a sixth year of eligibility to return in ’09-’10.  Kevin Craft is a transfer from Mount San Antonio College (via SDSU). Osaar Rasshan was transitioned to WR under KD and switched back last season in response to injuries/ineffectiveness to/from Ben Olson, Pat Cowan, and McLeod Bethel-Thompson.

'09-'10 (7 total scholarship players)

QB1: Cowan (RS SR)
QB2: Craft (RS SR)
QB3: Forcier (RS SO)

Reserves: Rasshan (RS SR); Crissman (RS FR or SO); Prince (RS FR or SO)

Incoming Freshmen/Transfers: Richard Brehaut (4 stars, #13 by Scout)

Notes: This assumes that Cowan will be able to obtain another year of  eligibility.  If he can’t expect Craft to be the likely starter with Forcier and Crissman most likely to be the top back-up.  Brehaut is highly touted but unlikely to break into the starting line-up his freshman year.

'10-'11 (4 scholarship players):

QB1: Forcier (RS JR)
QB2: Crissman (RS SO or JR)
QB3: Brehaut (RS FR or SO)

Reserves: Prince (RS SO or JR)

Notes: In two seasons’ time, the QB position will be wide-open, with Forcier, Crissman, and Brehaut all possible starters.  Prince, with a strong showing either during the previous season or going into camp before ’10-’11 could break into the mix.  If Norm Chow’s instincts on Brehaut play out as they have before, the job could be his by a long-shot.

ASSESSMENT:  While we have really good depth at QB this season and next, this year’s QBs are learning an entirely new system, with starter Olson working for yet another offensive coordinator.  As great as NC is as an OC, expect growing pains as Olson gets acclimated with Chow’s offense.  Long-term, we look set at QB, with Crissman and Brehaut likely to run the Bruins offense in a few seasons.  Going into ’10-’11, the Bruins will only have 4 QBs, so look for CRN and NC to bring in some new signal-callers in the Class of ’10.  By not offering Nunes and Brehaut, it seems to indicate CRN and NC will wait until ’10 to bring in more depth.

RUNNING BACKS

'08-'09 (10 total scholarship players):

HB1: Kahlil Bell (SR)
HB2: Raymond Carter (RS FR)
HB3: Chane Moline (JR)
HB4: Christian Ramirez (JR)
FB1: Trevor Theriot (RS JR)
FB2: Tobi Umodu (RS SO)

Reserves: Craig Sheppard, HB (RS JR) (Non-Scholarship); Robert McCurdy, HB/FB (RS FR) (Non-Scholarship)

Incoming Freshmen: Aundre Dean, HB (4 stars, #6 by Scout); Milton Knox, HB (4 stars, #30 by Scout); Johnathan Franklin, HB (3 stars, #55 by Scout); Derrick Coleman, FB (3 stars, #3 by Scout)

Notes: The above assumes Dean, Knox, and Franklin will not break into the rotation this season; at the minimum, expect Dean and Knox to get some significant time, likely slotting in between Carter and Moline.  Also, both Bell and Carter are returning from missing significant time with injury.  Umodu has made the conversion from LB to FB this season, so expect Coleman to press for time should Theriot go down with injury. 

'09-'10 (9 total scholarship players)

HB1: Carter (RS SO)
HB2: Dean (RS FR or SO)
HB3: Knox (RS FR or SO)
HB4: Ramirez (SR)/Moline (SR)
FB1: Theriot (RS SR)
FB2: Umodu (RS JR)/Coleman (RS FR or SO)

Reserves: Franklin, HB (RS FR or SO); Ramirez, HB (SR)/Moline, HB/FB (SR); Umodu, FB (RS JR)/Coleman, FB (RS FR or SO); Sheppard, HB (RS SR) (Non-Scholarship); Robert McCurdy, HB/FB (RS SO) (Non-Scholarship)

Incoming Freshmen: No current commits for the Class of ‘09

Notes: Dean and Knox, if they live up to their billing, should be getting significant time.  Carter was a highly touted recruit but has been hampered by injury. Only Bell will graduate.

'10-'11 (7 scholarship players):

HB1: Carter (RS JR)
HB2: Dean (RS SO or JR)
HB3: Knox (RS SO or JR)
HB4: Franklin (RS SO or JR)
FB1: Umodu (RS SR)
FB2: Coleman (RS SO or JR)

Reserves: Robert McCurdy, HB/FB (RS JR) (Non-Scholarship)

Notes: The above assumes that there will be no additional running back recruits brought in with either the Class of ’09 or the Class of ’10.  Expect CRN and NC to bring in additional depth with the Class of ’09 and/or Class of ’10.

ASSESSMENT:  Our running back corps will be the strength of our offense this season.  With Ben Olson learning a new system behind a weakened and thin offensive line, look for NC to utilize our depth and quality at RB to maximum advantage.  Bell is a proven talent and Carter, Dean, and Knox are all highly touted.  Our RB corps should be deep again the following season, but look for NC and CRN to bring in more talent by the ’10-’11 season, although Carter, Dean, and Knox give us a solid core of young talent to build our offense around for at least three seasons.

WIDE RECEIVERS AND TIGHT ENDS

'08-'09 (14 total scholarship players):

WR (SE1): Dominique Johnson (RS SO)
WR (SE2): Gavin Ketchum (RS JR)
WR (FL1): Marcus Everett (RS SR)
WR (FL2): Terrence Austin (JR)
TE1: Logan Paulsen (SR)
TE2: Ryan Moya (RS JR)

Reserves: Ryan Graves, WR (SE) (RS SR); Jamil Turner, WR (FL) (RS JR); Nate Chandler, TE (RS FR)

Incoming Freshmen: Taylor Embree, WR (FL) (FR Early Enrollee – C/O ’07, 1 star, NR by Scout); Nelson Rosario, WR (4 stars, #41 by Scout); Antwon Moutra, WR (4 stars, #43 by Scout); Jerry Johnson, WR (3 stars, #57 by Scout); Cory Harkey, TE (3 stars, #47 by Scout)

Notes: Marcus Everett returns after obtaining an extra year of eligibility following season-ending injury last season.  Ryan Moya returns after a season-ending injury last season. 

'09-'10 (11 total scholarship players)

WR (SE1): Johnson (RS JR)
WR (SE2): Ketchum (RS SR)
WR (FL1): Austin (SR)
WR (FL2): Embree (SO)
TE1: Moya (RS SR)
TE2: Chandler (RS SO)

Reserves: Turner, WR (FL) (RS SR); Rosario, WR (RS FR or SO); Moutra, WR (RS FR or SO); Johnson, WR (RS FR or SO); Harkey, TE (RS FR or SO)

Incoming Freshmen: No current commits for Class of ‘09

Notes: Highly touted TE Chandler should break into the offense on two-TE sets once Paulsen graduates.

'10-'11 (7 scholarship players):

WR (SE1): Johnson (RS SR)
WR (SE2): Rosario (RS SO or JR)
WR (FL1): Embree (JR)
WR (FL2): Moutra (RS SO or JR)
TE1: Chandler (RS JR)
TE2: Hackey (RS SO or JR)

Reserves: Johnson, WR (RS SO or JR)

Notes: Depth at WR and TE will be thin following the graduations of Ketchum, Austin, Turner, and Moya.

ASSESSMENT:  Marcus Everett returning will be a huge boost to the wide receiving corps, which has good depth, but not a lot of experience (3 starts combined of all other WRs in ’07-’08 season).  Depth should not be an issue in the wide receiving corps, until the ’10-’11 season, where depth will be thin due to graduation.  TE is another area of strength for the offense this season, with both Paulsen and Moya experienced.  Chandler was highly-touted coming out of HS and should be a solid starter in the future for the Bruins.  Embree has been impressive in this year’s spring camp; Rosario should provide height at WR in the future.

OFFENSIVE LINE

'08-'09 (16 total scholarship players):

LT: Micah Kia (JR)
LG: Darius Savage (RS SO)
C: Micah Reed (RS SR)
RG: Scott Glicksberg (RS SR)/Nick Ekbatani (RS JR)
RT: Mike Harris (RS FR)

Reserves: Brandon Bennett, LT (RS SO); Sonny Tevaga, LG (RS SO); Aaron Meyer, LG (RS SR); Jake Dean, C (RS SO); Adam Heater, C (RS JR); Glicksberg, RG (RS SR)/Ekbatani, RG (RS JR); Andy Keane, RG (RS SO); Sean Sheller (RS SO – Out for Season)

Incoming Freshmen/Transfers: Donovan Edwards, OT (JR, JC Transfer – 1 star by Scout); Connor Bradford, OT (3 stars, #81 by Scout); Jeff Baca, OG (3 stars, #36 by Scout)

Notes: Sean Sheller was projected to be the starting RT but is out for the season with a knee injury. Darius Savage has switched from the defensive line to the offensive line. Scott Glicksberg has switched from TE to the offensive line. Micah Reed has switched from RG to C this season. Adam Heater has switched from TE to the offensive line. Sonny Tevaga is the younger brother of former pre-season All-American OG Shannon Tevaga.

'09-'10 (13 total scholarship players)

LT: Kia (SR)
LG: Savage (RS JR)
C: Dean (RS JR)
RG: Ekbatani (RS SR)
RT: Sheller (RS JR)

Reserves: Bennett, LT (RS JR); Tevaga, LG (RS JR); Heater, C (RS SR); Keane, RG (RS JR); Edwards, OT (RS JR or SR); Bradford, OT (RS FR or SO); Baca, OG (RS FR or SO)

Incoming Freshmen/Transfers: Greg Capella, OG (3 stars, #28 by Scout)

Notes: Starting positions along the line are in flux going into next season; expect Kia and Sheller to book-end the offensive line.

'10-'11 (10 scholarship players):

LT: Bradford (RS SO or JR)
LG: Savage (RS SR)
C: Dean (RS SR)
RG: Baca (RS SO or JR)/Tevaga (RS SR)
RT: Sheller (RS SR)

Reserves: Bennett, LT (RS SR); Tevaga, LG (RS SR)/Baca, OG (RS SO or JR); Keane, RG (RS SR); Edwards, OT (RS SR if uses RS); Capella, OG (RS FR or SO)

Notes: LT, RG, and RT should all be wide open, with Bradford, Baca, Keane, and Tevaga all competing to start.

ASSESSMENT:  While our numerical depth isn’t an issue, the quality of our line is a major concern.  Numerous projected starters have little to no experience starting on the offensive line and numerous starters are undersized.  Down the line, the offensive line gets woefully thin.  If Baca and Bradford don’t pan out, the line could be in pretty bad shape.  Look for CRN and NC to make landing OL talent a major priority in both the Class of ’09 and the Class of ’10.  Failure to bring in more OL talent in the next two classes could cause major problems for the Bruin offense down the line.

KICKERS

'08-'09 (3 total scholarship players):

K: Kai Forbath (RS SO)
P: Aaron Perez (RS SR)
KOS: Jimmy Rotstein (RS JR) (Non-Scholarship)

Reserves: None

Incoming Freshmen: Jeff Locke, P (4 stars, #1 by Scout)

Notes: Locke will most likely redshirt his first year at UCLA, taking over the punting duties after Aaron Perez graduates.

'09-'10 (2 total scholarship players)

K: Forbath (RS JR)
P: Locke (RS FR or SO)
KOS: Rotstein (RS SR) (Non-Scholarship)

Reserves: None

Incoming Freshmen: No current commits in the Class of ’09.

Notes: Expect Rotstein to continue handling kick-off duties, with Forbath focusing solely on field goal and PAT duties.  Locke is the top-ranked punter in the Class of ’09 and should be a solid starter for us next season.

'10-'11 (2 scholarship players):

K: Forbath (RS SR)
P:  Locke (RS SO or JR)
KOS: Forbath (RS SR)/Locke (RS SO or JR)

Reserves: None

Notes: Kick-off duties in the ’10-’11 season are up-for-grabs, but odds are Locke will handle kick-off duties, leaving Forbath to focus on FG and PAT duties.

ASSESSMENT:  Although KD was a terrible coach, he did a terrific job of bringing in talented kicking talent.  Perhaps because KD knew he’d be relying on his kickers so often with his inept offense. CRN will need to plan on bringing in a kicker in the Class of ’10, to redshirt the new kicker in anticipation of a new kicker taking over after Forbath graduates.  There is an outside possibility that Forbath could leave a year early, but it’s a slim possibility.

Thanks for all of the support.  As we get closer to basketball season, I'll try to do the same kind of break-down for our Ben Ball Warriors (which I suspect will be a bit harder in the one-and-done era).  So feel free to let me know what you'd like to see, what kind of stuff to add for the next time I do this.

<em>This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of BruinsNation's (BN) editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of BN's editors.</em>

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