As of the time I’m writing this article, the AAC remains one of the FBS conferences planning on playing football this fall. Whether or not that holds true over time is the biggest question. Speaking of questions, Houston’s football team is full of them. Dana Holgorsen’s staff is still trying to figure out who will start for this team at multiple positions, and the excitement of the unknown is what brings us here today. We start with offense, a group that has the potential to be extremely explosive this year. Yes there are concerns, but the talent available should provide some consistency.
There’s no reason to believe Tune won’t be the starter, but the battle for his backup will be interesting. Holgorsen played last year, but Moussad is a talented gunslinger who will compete. If Tune can take a step forward and get better protection, the Coogs will be tough to stop.
It’s unlikely that Ta’Zhawn Henry would get immediate eligibility, but if he did he’d compete for the starting spot. Porter and Car bring different skillsets to the table, but both can impact a game. Porter’s the better pass catcher of the two, which fits well in Dana Holgorsen’s offense, but Car is the better downhill runner. Finding reps for both shouldn’t be difficult, and changing up the backs could give Houston an advantage with teams needing to adjust to the arsenal each player possesses.
Stevenson, Singleton, and Bradley flashed at times last year, with Stevenson leading the team in receiving yards. Corbin returns on the inside to give the Coogs a big-time deep threat, which will open the field up underneath. Despite only playing four games last year, Corbin was the fifth leading receiver in 2019. Bradley averaged 20.4 yards per catch last year, and could have a breakout season with the attention on Corbin and Stevenson.
Trahan’s an athletic pass catcher who finished third in receptions last year, but will need to work on his blocking to be more effective. Creamer is the only other tight end with receptions (2) in 2019, but there’s plenty of potential in this group. Watch for freshman Trevonte Sylvester to contribute as well this year. At 6’5”, 220 pounds, he’s a great target for Clayton Tune to find downfield.
Left Tackle: Patrick Paul, Jordan Boatman
Left Guard: Dennis Bardwell, Max Banes
Center Jack Freeman, Braylon Jones
Right Guard: Braylon Jones, Keenan Murphy
Right Tackle: Gio Pancotti, Reuben Unije
This is the most fluid group. It’s anyone’s guess who’ll play at what position. Freeman should be the starting center, but it’s up in the air from there. Jones and Pancotti will be starters, but both can play multiple positions. Pancotti played every spot except center last year, and Jones can play either guard spot and center. Paul showed promise in relief of Josh Jones last year with his length, but needs to become more consistent. Bardwell and Banes possess great strength on the inside. If Houston’s offense thrives this year, it’s because this unit puts it all together and becomes a strength instead of a liability.