In the latest sign that the offseason really has started to come to its wheezing, gasping end, Auburn’s first official fall roster has been released. Not an earth-shattering deal, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few interesting developments, as have been mostly chronicled by both Andy Bitter and Jay Tate. (Charles Goldberg has a few minor notes as well.)
Building on/adding to those observations …
— A dollar says that when both Jake Holland and Michael Dyer–who’ll share the No. 5 jersey–start lighting people up in 2011 (if not before), we get a story and photo of the two of them under the headline “HIGH FIVES” or “FIVES ALIVE” or some similar 5-based pun. Book it. (By the by, when was the last time Auburn has a linebacker sporting a single-digit jersey? Am I just forgetting someone obvious? I don’t recall one off-hand.) (As a second aside here, it’s safe to say these two aren’t going to be sharing duty on any special teams units this season. Maybe Holland. Dyer? Nope.)
— Your offensive line, in weight, left to right: 319, 316, 297, 302, and then 299 if your right tackle is Mosley, 315 if it’s Gaydon, and 304 if Eddins plugs in somewhere. Worth noting …
1. That’s a substantial jump for Mosley, who was only listed at 285 in the spring.
2. Geez, when did Ziemba get that big? When did Pugh hit 297? Remember when he was playing as a 260, 270-pound tackle under Franklin? Those days are long gone. Grimes and Malzahn seriously want these guys big, not that we haven’t known that since the moment they arrived.
3. Yep, the roster spells it “Gaydon,” so Gaydon it is.
— Speaking of weight on the line, good heavens, Eric Mack. 361?!? He was listed at 315 on Signing Day. I think the consensus has been that Mack would immediately step in ahead of players like John Sullen and Andre Harris to join the second string at one guard slot or the other, but even for a kid of his size … even with a staff that likes a lot of weight … even at guard … 46 pounds is a hell of a lot of weight to add in the space of five or six months.
On Signing Day, the expectation was that the incoming class of linemen would provide a lot of immediate help, and obviously either Mosley or Gaydon are still the favorites to get the right tackle assignment. But between Shon Colenan’s leukemia (keep on keepin’ on, Shon) and Mack’s weight gain, there might not be as much of that help as we thought.
— Yup, Dee Ford’s up to 240, and Nosa Eguae up to 258. If Ford hasn’t lost any of his speed nor Eguae any of his motor at those weights, there’s a lot of potential. Between those two guys and the class of ’10, Auburn’s got a ton to look forward to at end even after Carter and Goggans depart.
— According to this roster, last year’s defensive tackle tandem of Ricks and Blanc weighed in at 294 and 290, respectively. This year, Blanc and Fairley are set to go at 297 and 298. That’s not a world of difference, but yeah, I think it’s a step in the right direction.
— Speaking of the DTs, Zach Clayton’s not going to see any more time at end a la 2008; he’s up to 296. Jeffrey Whitaker’s at 308. Derrick Lykes and Kenneth Carter are in the mid-280s, but still, that’s a lot more beef in the middle than Rocker had access to last season.
— Jawara White’s listed at about eight pounds heavier than I had him at in last week’s “Google surveys …” post, and that was already a good 10 pounds heavier than he was when he committed. As Tate points out, White is going to be one very “thick” linebacker.
— Both Bitter and Tate note that Sullen has lost some 30-40 pounds since first arriving at Auburn. You have to think that after breaking into the starting lineup (even for a game) as a true freshman, even with the weight problem, Sullen’s really positioning himself for some playing time this year and a run at a starting job next year. It would be a great story for a hometown kid who Tubby’s staff had decided wasn’t worth the offer.
— 171 seems right about where we’d want Onterio McCalebb, right? Bigger, but not that big? Right.
— Oh man, I have spent way too much time thinking/processing/writing about all this. Like the song says, or should: We can hardly stand the wait / please football, don’t be late.