As we did with the freshman class, let’s stroll through the sophomores and let’s dig a little too deep as with investigate the official roster.
* One thing that’s definitely changed from this roster to last is a lack of rounding. (Unlike years’ past, the official roster is listing heights down to the 1/4 inch.) Just about every player that got the benefit of a round number got dropped down a peg on this roster, with the exception of Jarron Jones.
Jones is now listed at 6-5.5, 305 pounds. That’s plenty big for a defensive end and shows an interesting developmental process for a guy that’s hopefully going to work his way into the rotation this season at end.
Jones was listed at 299 on the official ’12 roster, dropped down to 295 on the spring roster and is now 305 on the ’13 roster, all while growing a half-inch between seasons.
* It’s rare that a team’s kicker is one of the guys you actually don’t mind getting spotted coming off the bus. But Kyle Brindza must be following in Ben Turk’s footsteps with his dedication to lifting weights.
Brindza is listed at 6-0.75, 236 pounds, good enough to play inside linebacker on some rosters. He’ll have the first shot to win the kicker and punter jobs, with Nick Tausch battling for the placekicker job and freshman walk-on Andrew Antognoli and Wake Forest transfer Alex Wulfeck battling at punter. Senior Jude Rhodes, who hails from Kenya, is also in the mix.
* Ben Councell feels a bit like a guy that’s odd man out at the ‘Dog’ linebacker position with both Danny Spond and Jaylon Smith getting most of the headlines, but don’t count out the (redshirt) sophomore. Councell is up to 254 pounds after being listed as a 240-pounder last season.
* It looks like Mark Harrell did a nice job during his freshman season in the weight room. After being listed at 287 pounds as a true freshman, Harrell is now listed at 305 pounds, the same weight he was listed at during spring practice.
Harrell is another one of those names that could work his way into the guard rotation if Christian Lombard stays outside at tackle.
* Incredible Shrinking Man Candidate: Preferred walk-on safety Eamon McOsker went from being listed at 6-foot-2 to 6-0.5 in one calendar year. Somebody should get thicker socks next time they pull out the tape measure.
* Put Romeo Okwara on the list of people not shrinking. The sophomore linebacker, who is still among the youngest players on the roster, is a pretty well put together guy. Checking in at a shade under 6-foot-4 and 258 pounds, Okwara is another name that could be a wildcard in the linebacker depth chart, battling Prince Shembo and Ishaq Williams for time at the ‘Cat’ linebacker position.
Okwara could eventually turn into a defensive end, but he’s athletic enough to look smooth in coverage and handle the ‘Dog’ duties at a time last year when Spond was injured and depth was thin.
* It looks like John Turner had an eventful last calendar year. On last year’s roster, Turner weighed in at 207 pounds. On the spring roster, Turner bulked up to 220 pounds. He’s back down to 212 pounds on the ’13 official roster.
Speed always was the biggest concern the staff had in Turner’s ability, so you’ve got to wonder if shedding a bit more weight was to help him cover more ground.
* Four guys who have a chance to spend significant time in the starting lineup are Chris Brown, CJ Prosise, Elijah Shumate and Ronnie Stanley. All four have transformed their bodies since arriving on campus, adding over 10 pounds.
Brown went from 172 pounds to 191. Prosise went from 208 to 220 pounds. Shumate now weighs 220 pounds after playing last year at 208. And Stanley is now at 318 after arriving at 304.