August 30, 2009

Taking a Look at the Two Deep

On Sunday, Boston College coach Frank Spaziani revealed the depth chart for the opening game against Northeastern coming up on Saturday. As usual there were a few surprises to be found on both offense and defense.

Offense

The fact that Spaziani wouldn't commit to Justin Tuggle or Michael Marscovetra as the starter didn't come as a total shock, especially considering that he said the other day that two quarterbacks would probably see action against Northeastern. Don't forget that Spaziani also said recently that Dave Shinskie had until Tuesday to return to practice or else he wouldn't be getting any playing time against Northeastern.

The biggest surprise on offense was tight ends Lars Anderson and Jordon McMichael being listed at fullback. I wouldn't read too much into this though as both Anderson and McMichael played their regular tight end position throughout summer practices and scrimmages. More than likely by listing the two tight ends at fullback it just means that they'll be playing a little bit of H-back, which they did a few times in the summer. Reading in between the lines it might also mean that none of the regular fullbacks on the roster are ready for game action as of yet.

At receiver, Rich Gunnell and Justin Jarvis were no surprise as starters. You have to give credit to Colin Larmond who worked his way back onto the two deep after being left off at the start of the summer. The question at receiver is would Ifeanyi Momah be in the two deep if he didn't suffer a knee injury?

Montel Harris outperformed Josh Haden last season but never was officially named the starter. That's all changed this year as Harris was named the starter ahead of Haden, although obviously both guys will play on Saturday. Keep an eye on Haden who seems to be taking full advantage of Gary Tranquill inserting him as the "3rd down back".

The offensive line had absolutely no surprises, as it was listed in the same order as in summer scrimmages when the unit was at full strength. It was a good sign that Rich Lapham was listed as a starter, as it means he looks to be healthy to go against the Huskies.

Defense

Perhaps the biggest surprise on the entire depth chart was Austin Giles getting the nod as the starter at left defensive tackle over Kaleb Ramsey. Did Giles win the job and is considered the permanent starter or is it simply a temporary job that came as a product of Ramsey's injuries keeping him out the last two scrimmages? You'd have to think the latter as Ramsey seemed to outplay Giles in summer scrimmage despite the fact that he was going against the first string offensive line.

Nick Rossi was able to secure a spot on the two deep ahead of youngsters Conor O'Neal and Dillon Quinn. Seeing Rossi ahead of Quinn wasn't a total shock after Quinn posted on his Facebook over the weekend "redshirting….sick". However, I was surprised that Rossi beat out O'Neal who had seemed to perform better in the scrimmages this summer.

Give strength and conditioning coach Jason Loscalzo props as he helped Max Holloway put on enough weight in the offseason to help him break the two deep. Don't be surprised if you see Halloway get some game action in obvious passing situations to take advantage of his above average pass rushing skills.

Will Thompson looks like he's still suffering from a nagging shoulder injury, and thus true freshman Luke Kuechly will start in the middle. Considering all of the different parts that go into playing the middle it's kind of amazing that a true freshman is able to do it, so hats off to Kuechly.

Some people might be surprised that Nick Clancy isn't a starter after starting at the "Sam" all spring and emerging from spring as the starter. However, Dominick LeGrande[/db] has been seeing time with the 1st unit for the past few weeks and has performed at a very high level so this doesn't come as a shock.

At cornerback, DeLeon Gause was able to win back his starting spot as the field corner over Donnie Fletcher. Starting at the other corner spot will be senior Roderick Rollins who was able to beat out Isaac Johnson. I'd chalk up the cornerback position as one where it won't matter much who starts, as all four players will probably see action each Saturday.

At safety it was somewhat of a surprise to see Jim Noel able to move his way onto the two deep. Noel struggled early in the summer at cornerback, but the freshman really flourished when he saw more time at safety.

On the special teams everything seemed to fall in line under the norm, and it was great to see Ryan Quigley on the depth chart after he missed the last two scrimmages.


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