For those who keep track of the Zips the big change shown thus far in the spring practice is an offensive line that’s been flopped.
The loss of two seniors, both on the right side, dictated those changes and they aren’t necessarily what anyone would have expected.
Rather than just move backups to starting positions offensive line coach Alan Arrington made the decision to get the best linemen on the field.
Last year’s starter at left tackle, Jarrod Pughsley, moves to right tackle where newcomer, 6-foot-4, 315 lbs. Cedric Brittnum joins him at right guard. Sophomore Quaison Osborne stays at left tackle where he his most comfortable coming out of his stance and Green native Dylan Brumbaugh joins him at left guard.
“You have to have your best combination. I think in the spring is where you can look at those things,” coach Terry Bowden said.
Right now, Arrington said that they have nine offensive linemen they feel that can play. In that respect, they’re happy, but not satisfied.
There are 11 listed on the spring roster. Though listed, Canton McKinley’s Kevin Mills isn’t participating this spring after having shoulder surgery. Curtis Black, though enrolled at UA, didn’t qualify academically. They are still looking for possible transfers to help bolster that part of the roster.
More on Brittnum
The juco transfer, who showed a mammoth frame on tape that the coaching staff showed on National Signing Day, has redistributed some of the weight. He’s definitely loss some of an ample gut, going from 330-335 lbs. to 317 according to Arrington.
Arrington said that Brittnum is struggling right now, but that won’t be an issue in spring practice right away.
"He's confused. The only thing we're trying to coach right now is his effort. We don't care about anything right now but his effort. If you play hard, we will teach you how to block and where to go. Right now, his head is spinning," he said.
Endorsement: At least one of their teammates has confidence in the offensive line already – presumed starting running back Jawon Chisholm.
With the smallest man on the line – center Travis Switzer – coming in at 6-foot-2 and 280 lbs., he sees a lot of runs into the secondary in his future.
“I’ve got five big dogs in front of me this year,” Chisholm said during Thursday’s practice.
Opening eyes; Were anyone to look for a standout today, they just needed to cast an eye in the direction of defensive end Alfonso Horner, who generated a consistent pass rush.
Clarification: Brittnum will wear jersey No. 74. A roster error erroneously listed another player with that number.