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Chris Smith
Courtesy: Spencer Farrin

Spring Preview: A Look at the Defensive Line

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: February 25, 2014
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ODUSports.com will do an eight-part preview, taking a look position-by-position at the Old Dominion University spring football roster.  Today we highlight the defensive line.

Overview
Of the nine players that started every game in 2013, two were defensive linemen.  Andrew Everett started all 12 at defensive end while Chris Smith made all 12 starts at defensive tackle.  The D-line lost just one player that made significant contributions in senior Nate Barnes. Ten of the 16 players saw action in 2013.

Defensive Line (16)
Malik Gumbs –
Played in seven games, recording eight tackles
Jai Franklin – Redshirted in 2013
Cullen Casey – Redshirted in 2013
Dominique Guinn-Bailey – Played in 11 games recording 24 tackles and three TFL’s
Chris Smith – Started all 12 games, had 26 tackles
Preston Smith – Played in all 12 games, moved from defensive end to defensive tackle
Rashaad Coward – Played in 10 games as a true freshman
Bumni Rotimi – Redshirted in 2013
Galen Evans – Redshirted in 2013 after suffering an injury in 2012
Gary Scruggs – Appeared in 10 games at defensive end and on special teams
Andrew Everett – Started all 12 games, tied for defensive line lead with 31 tackles
Jude Brenya – Started three games as a true freshman at defensive end
Anderson Miller – Redshirted in 2013 after playing in 11 games as a true freshman
Scott Wiggins – Played all 12 games as a true freshman
Terrell Reid – Tied for d-line lead with 31 tackles and d-line best with 6.5 TFL’s and three sacks
Torrez Wentz – Enrolled in January from Warrenton High School (Ga.)

2014 Signees (6)
Daniel Appouh – DE – 6-4, 230 – Germantown, Md./Seneca Valley
Poncho Barnwell – DE – 6-4, 260 – Rochester, N.Y./East/Nassau CC
Ryan Londree – DT – 6-3, 285 – Charlottesville, Va./Albemarle
Pat Toal – DT – 6-4, 280 – Hazlet, N.J./Raritan
Brandon Tyson – 6-1, 320 – Midlothian, Va./Clover Hill
O’Shane Ximines – 6-3, 225 – Ahoskie, N.C./Hertford County

Defensive Line Preview
A young group in 2013 featuring just one senior, ODU returns 10 players from the defensive line and two more that redshirted in 2013 that have game experience.

Andrew Everett and Terrell Reid had a D-line best 31 tackles apiece, while Reid had 6.5 tackles for loss and three sacks.  Everett added 1.5 tackles for loss and also blocked a pair of field goal attempts.

A year after starting all 13 games at defensive end, Preston Smith moved to defensive tackle and produced 28 tackles and two sacks.  Chris Smith started all 12 games at nose tackle and notched 26 stops and a sack.

Three true freshmen played on the defensive line for the Monarchs in 2013, led by Scott Wiggins who had 22 tackles, five tackles for loss and two sacks.  Rashaad Coward played in 10 games, recording 13 tackles and also blocked two kicks.  Jude Brenya earned three starts at defensive end and notched 13 tackles and a team-best four QB hurries.  Kanyia Anderson also played in 12 games on the defensive line last season but has now moved to linebacker.

Jai Franklin, Cullen Casey, Bumni Rotimi and Galen Evans all redshirted in 2013.  Evans played in 11 games as a true freshman in 2012 before suffering a season-ending injury and missing all of 2013.  He registered 16 tackles, three tackles for loss and two sacks.

ODU added Torrez Wentz in January.  Wentz is an early enrollee from Warrenton High School in Georgia.

Player Spotlight – Rashaad Coward

Coward

Q: You earned a lot of playing time in 2013.  What are some of the adjustments you had to make coming from high school? I had to get used to the speed of the game and how everybody is the same size as me now. 

Q: What are some of the things you worked on in your first year? My technique, that’s the main thing coach has been working with me on.  You need that to be successful in college.

Q: What is the biggest difference from high school to college?  The game pace is much quicker from high school to college.

Q: You blocked two kicks last season, what does it take to block a kick? I need to get penetration and get my hands up.  We practice during the week and they’ll tell us what gap to go to and who on the line we should attack.

Q: This is your first time doing off-season workouts at ODU, how have they gone? I’ve done pretty well.  Coaches have told me to keep working hard and the hard work will show.

Q: What’s it like coming to Virginia from New York?  I like the weather a lot.  I’m tired of the snow.

Favorite Movie? Friday After Next.

Favorite Food? Pizza

Dream Vacation? The Bahamas

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