Weekly Answers, Pt. 4

Check out the latest batch of weekly answers…

1) In the NFL NT are about 330lbs or more. Even in college you’d think that guy should be about 315 or so. Who will be the NT on the current roster? – codemonkeybruin
At first glance, with the roster as of today, I honestly don’t know. Donovan Carter is pretty stout and so are Brandon Willis and Seali’i Epenesa, but I don’t know if either of them are true nose guards. But this is January, and there’s a lot of time for players to bulk up.

2) Most DT we have on the roster (Marsh, Willis, Carter) would fit more at 3-4 DE and are not large enough to be a 3-4 NT even in college.
The toughest position to recruit in college is DT. In a 3-4 the NT is even harder to find and the 3-4 DE a lot of times would be a DT in a 4-3. Will we be able to recruit enough bulk to play with a 3-4 front? Is this a smart switch since now we essentially have to fill 3 DT spots instead of 2? – codemonkeybruin
I think it’s going to be a challenge because the Pac-12 has some tough national recruiters at the defensive line coach position. Ellis McCarthy is a good start, but I’m interested to see how they try to address that position going forward.

3) What do you expect the depth chart to look like for the front 7 in a 3-4? – codemonkeybruin
Ask me again next week and I’ll be able to answer better.

4) What do you think of Manfro? Will he make a difference, or is he more of a scout team player? – Vvvbj
I actually kind of like his game. He’s got some shiftiness to him that has been lacking at UCLA. He had some pretty nice cuts in and out of traffic last year, and I was pretty impressed. Now, does that mean he leapfrogs anyone in the current corps, no, but I wouldn’t automatically pencil him in as a scout-team player. Watch out for him.

5) Can we get an update on Dietrich Riley? Will he be back with the team in 2012? – anonymous
I know he desperately wants to play, but it’s still sort of a wait and see approach.

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  • bruinbiochem06

    Word is D. Riley will redshirt this up coming season. Unfortunate if true.

  • Anonymous

    When UCLA ran the 3-4 defense in the 80s, their most decorated nose guard was Terry Tumey, who weighed only 240 lbs. Yet, he also made the All-Pac10 first team three times. Not the biggest guy, but he played with tenacity and had great technique and positioning. Karl Morgan was only slightly bigger, yet he was another stellar performer at the NG position.

  • ucla-of-the-rockies

    @anon1131: You could get away with nose guards of that size back then because offensive lines weren’t stocked entirely with 300-plus pounders like today.

  • ProbationU

    Maybe Josh Smith could switch to NG. Not sure he’s tough enough and is too tall…but he isn’t doing much in BB…at least against quality teams.