So the first depth chart of the season has been released. According to the Winston-Salem Journal, Sam Hartman is your starting quarterback, a decision made easier by Jamie Newman pulling up awkwardly in practice. Other noteworthy factoids:
-Sage Surratt is starting for an apparently banged up Scotty Washington. As I highlighted in my receiver preview earlier this preseason, that might not be the worst thing in the world. I’d call it both a high floor and high ceiling “gamble”, though calling it a gamble is fallacious since Scotty apparently isn’t good to go. Hopefully that’s not long-term, but if Sage explodes, he might take the spot anyway. Who knows?
-Not only has Chuck Wade converted to SS, he’s the starter. That’s kind of surprising to me, but on the other hand I seem to remember him being more than happy to lay out some rather nasty blocks even as a receiver on the offensive side, so maybe it’s not that crazy that he might be expected to bring the pain on the defensive side, and I’d think his time as a receiver might help him read plays effectively to know what he’s going to need to do on a given snap in the thick of the action.
-Army grad transfer Eric Osteen is on kickoffs. Not exactly a shocker in my opinion, given both his experience and strength. It’s pretty cool to have a 28 year old in that role on the team. Neat story.
-Placekicker still being a question mark kind of worries me a little bit, but I suppose replacing a hoss like Mike Weaver is bound to bring some uncertainty, and I fully expect whomever gets the start will keep it unless they find themselves missing (thanks, John Madden). This delay is likely to give the staff the most time possible to determine who the guy will be.
-I really don’t know how I feel about Greg Dortch being on returns given the dangerous nature of the position, but apparently Coach Clawson looked at Les Johns (hi, Les!) like he had three heads when Les asked him about it, and I will admit field position is a big deal, as is getting your best playmaker in open space regularly.
There’s really not too much else to analyze, near as I can tell. We return a lot of starters, and most of the starters who are gone are just being replaced by former backups. The sports equivalent of an in-house promotion, I suppose. Still, there might be something I’m missing! Any thoughts on this information? Sound off in the comments, and as always...
On to the first. Go Deacs.