Mississippi State Spring Battles: Offensive Line

Initial Spring Battle Outlook

The Mississippi State offensive line struggled last season, after the injury to starting right guard Tobias Smith. This area of the team is in a tough position, coming into the spring – with the departure of three starting offensive linemen: Quinton Saulsberry, Addison Lawrence, and James Carmon.

What that means is that there will be great competition for their spots, during Spring Practice. There are four spots up for grabs – with five players competing for them. It should make for some interesting board drills.

 Left and Right Tackle

The Candidates

Blaine Clausell (Redshirt Sophomore 6’ 7”, 305)

Player Breakdown: Clausell is entering his third Spring Practice as a Bulldog – after enrolling early at Mississippi State. He redshirted as a freshman – sitting behind Derek Sherrod. The explosive tackle got a chance to see action in about half of Mississippi State’s games in 2011 – drawing a few starts.

Clausell has been pegged as the favorite to beMississippiState’s starting left tackle after the spring. He seems poised to take control of the position.

Charles Siddoway (Redshirt Junior 6’ 6”, 300)

Player Breakdown: Siddoway was one of the key junior college signees in the Bulldogs’ 2012 class. He is expected to come in and either start at left tackle or right tackle. It just depends on the other players and where he fits best.

He certainly has the tools, excellent drive blocking ability and a true mean streak, to be a dominant SEC lineman.

Damien Robinson (Redshirt Sophomore 6’ 8”, 310)

Player Breakdown: Robinson was a highly-touted offensive lineman, coming out of high school. He hasn’t developed at the rate many would have hoped. Robinson was moved to right tackle from right guard and he seems to be settling in at the position.

MississippiState’s offensive line coach, John Hevesy has said that Robinson is one of his top three offensive tackles coming into the spring. So, the agile linemen will get every opportunity to compete for a starting job.

Center

The Candidates

Dillon Day (Redshirt Freshman 6’ 2”, 300)

Player Breakdown: Day was forced into action in 2011 after the injury to Tobias Smith. The nasty center shows flashes of being a good SEC lineman, but he struggled snapping the ball.

Day is now expected to compete with Dylan Holley for the starting center job.

Dylan Holley (Redshirt Freshman 6’ 2”, 305)

Player Breakdown: Holley along with Siddoway was a key junior college signee. He is expected to come in and challenge Dillon Day for the center spot and provide depth on the interior offensive line.

Final Outlook

I expect Blaine Clausell to finish the spring as the starter at left tackle. Siddoway should beat out Robinson on the right side, although Robinson could step up to the plate.

Dylan Holley will beat out Dillon Day for the starting center job, in my opinion. But it doesn’t matter because Day will likely slide over and start at right guard.

Left Tackle and Right Tackle

Favorite: Clausell at LT and Siddoway at RT

My Pick: Clausell at LT and Siddoway at RT

Center

Favorite: Dylan Holley

My Pick: Dylan Holley

 

Jeremiah Short covers Mississippi State University football and basketball.  Follow him on Twitter, @JeremiahShort26; join his Facebook blog, Real Story Sports: J.Short’s Blog, or e-mail him, JShort@realstorypublishing.com.

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