With fall camp officially behind us, it’s time to update our projected depth chart. Up first, the offense.
Here’s how I projected the depth chart coming out of spring ball:
Heading in IU’s first game week, a few things have changed. Here’s the updated projected depth chart:
As a reminder, these depth charts are based on (1) the published depth chart from before fall camp began and (2) my feeling for where things stand based on what coaches have said and the few media reports regarding practice that are out there.
No changes to the starters here, but the second unit shifted around. Tim Gardner left the program. Coy Cronk has emerged as the clear backup to Brandon Knight at LT. At this point, I think we can expect to see Cronk playing a similar role to what Knight filled last year as an extra lineman/tight end in running situations. Based on the depth chart released before fall camp, it looks like Stepaniak will step in at C or RG if needed.
Friend is the clear starter. Fuchs should see plenty of action, especially on passing downs. JuCo transfer Ian Thomas has impressed KW in camp, and I’d expect him to be the 3rd tight end off the bench. I haven’t heard much about Austin Dorris, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he saw a little game action as well. He has the size to help out in the run game.
The injury to J’Shun Harris shakes things up a bit at the slot. As the season progresses, I would expect Paige to receive the vast majority of the playing time, but Isaac James and Ricky Brookins will probably receive opportunities early to show what they can do. Luke Timian could also drop down to the slot, and there’s an outside chance the true freshman Kiante Enis could see action there. On the outside, Nick Westbrook, Donovan Hale and Luke Timian seem like the likely candidates to rotate in for Cobbs and Jones. Since the last update, Dom Booth left the program. I haven’t heard a thing about Marqui Hawkins so I removed him from the chart.
I don’t have room on the chart for all the backs that are likely to see action, especially in the early going. The big change is that Camion Patrick – who I boldly placed in the starting role – is out until early October at the earliest. So Devine has the starting spot, and he’ll be the bell cow. After that, who the hell knows? My guess is that Majette will be the second guy off the bench. Based on the comments from coaches, Cole Gest has really come on, and I almost expect him to get carries in September. I think Devonte Williams did enough in spring practice to justify playing time. Clyde Newton and Tyler Natee could very well see the field in short-yardage situations. And now Deland McCullough is suggesting the possibility of two-back sets. It should be fun to watch.
Coach Wilson hasn’t said the magic words “Lagow is the starter” yet, but he’s strongly hinted at it. I’m comfortable assuming that Lagow is the man heading into the FIU game. That said, I would not be shocked to see Zander get a series or two a game in September (and maybe more if Lagow struggles).