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Arkansas State Countdown to Spring Football: The Offensive Line

A look at one of the biggest rebuilding jobs for ‘17

NCAA Football: Arkansas State at Auburn John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

If the graduation after the 2016 season of all five starters on the offensive line didn't already tell you it was a priority for Blake Anderson’s offense in recruiting and spring ball, the final tally of 9 signees on the O-line underlined that need. It was a mix of JUCO players on last years squad that counted towards the scholarship limit (2), high school recruits (3), JUCO signees for this year(3), and one 5th year transfer. The performance of the line last year was erratic at best and the final statistics tell the story of an offense that never could find its rushing game identity and a new QB learning on the run from the pocket.

The 9 Signees

  • Lanard Bonner: 6-5, 330, Jr., OL, Birmingham, Ala. (Highland (Kan.) CC)
  • Marvis Brown: 6-3, 337, Jr., OL, Orange, Texas (Tyler (Texas) Junior College)
  • Justin Dutton: 6-4, 305, Fr., OL, Guthrie, Okla. (Guthrie)
  • Dwayne Fisher: 6-4, 345, Fr., OL, Marrero, La. (John Ehret)
  • Andre Harris: 6-5, 330, Fr., OL, Oklahoma City, Okla. (Putnam City North)
  • Chase Johnson: 6-3, 286, Jr., OL, Olive Branch, Miss. (Northwest Mississippi CC)
  • Alex Novak: 6-2, 266, So., OL, Fairhope, Ala. (Southwestern Mississippi CC)
  • Jaypee Philbert: 6-5, 314, Jr., OL, Atlanta, Ga. (Iowa State)
  • Nour-Eddine Seidnaly: 6-5, 300, Jr., OL, Silver Spring, Md. (ASA (N.Y.) College)

Anderson has indicated that the starting five for the season opener at Nebraska could look like this:

OT Jaypee Philbert

OG Marvis Brown

C Chase Johnson

OG Lanard Bonner

OT Nour-Eddine Seidnaly

But also in the mix expect to see these guys:

Dalton Ford 6-4 295 Soph

Troy Elliot 6-5 302 RS Fr

Establishing a solid starting unit in the spring will be no more important than on the offensive line. It will be the starting point for any doubts about what the Red Wolves will be able to do offensively in 2017. With Anderson taking the reins back on play calling, it will be interesting to see how the line gels and give ASU fans a glimpse of what might be, good or bad.