FAU left tackle DeAndre Williams goes through a drill last season. (Owl Access File Photo)
2012 Position Preview: OL
FAU's much-maligned offensive line needs to improve for the Owls' offense to be successful.
Originally published on
BOCA RATON - Many point to FAU's offensive line as the genesis for the Owls' offensive woes during the past two years – with good reason.
In 2010 the Owls trotted out five new starters and that group never really gave quarterback Jeff Van Camp any time to throw.
Last season the line improved, especially near the end of the season, but poor quarterback play combined with the luxury of opening holes for human bulldozer Alfred Morris made it difficult to judge their progress.
The Owls enter 2012 with question marks at almost every offensive position, but as a unit the offensive line may be the most solid heading into camp.
Of course, offensive line coach Luke Meadows may not be ready to admit that.
“I thought we should have been further ahead than where we are now,” Meadows said following spring practice. “I think they understand the base principles. Now what they have to understand is that this (was) against one defense.”
Four of the five players projected as starters saw significant time last season. Two more, JUCO transfers Stern Vile and Mustafa Johnson, enrolled at FAU in January and participated in spring practice.
The Owls enter the fall camp with as much depth as they've enjoyed in recent years. Still, Meadows says he's yet to see that depth translate into on-field skill.
“We're nowhere near where we need to be if we want to win a conference championship,” he said.
OwlAccess.com's Projected Depth Chart
Joe Bailey (6-5, 290 R-Jr.)
Likely the most athletic of the Owls' lineman. Has the potential to play at the next level.
Vinnie Davino (6-5, 270 So.)
After Bailey, could be the second most athletic lineman.
Stern Vile (6-5, 335 Jr.)
The Dutchman's is a solid run blocker but still needs to improve pass blocking.
Ricardo Henry (6-4, 310 R-Sr.)
Strong core makes him tough to shed. Could be a surprise starter on opening day.
Jordan Sessa (6-5, 280 R-Sr.)
Will have to survive a 3-way battle at the center position.
Mustafa Johnson (6-3, 295 Jr.)
Hasn't played center long. Still working on his first step and his pass set.
Andy Czuprynski (6-5, 270 R-Sr.)
One of the most experienced Owls. Started FAU's past 24 games.
Erik Hansen (6-5, 280, R-Sr.)
Wouldn't be surprising to see the versatile Hansen climb his way into a starting role.
DeAndre Williams (6-5, 290 R-Jr.)
Played in 18 games over the past two seasons.
Robbie Nasiff (6-4, 265 R-Fr.)
Local product (Delray Beach-American Heritage) looking to impress the hometown crowd.
Sam McRoy, Chris Newbold, Max Karrick
Mike Marsaille – Big guy was trying to shed some pounds during the summer. Has the skill to quickly ascend the depth chart.
Jonathan Ragoo – Had a bigger weight challenge to overcome than did Marsaille. Mountain of an offensive lineman needs to work to become a factor.