How long will it take to fix O and D lines?

Into mid to upper level SEC lines with depth and rotation?

2 or 3 years still or is there a way to pick up several juco’s I wonder?

Seems like most jucos we get dont help us the first year.

I said before this season that I thought it might be 2021 before the offensive line is at the level Morris wants to see. The issue, in my mind, is twofold. First, this offense requires a different kind of offensive lineman than was recruited under Bielema. I thought it was telling last year that the coaches were asking linemen to lose 20-30 pounds. You just don’t see that.

The lineman for an uptempo offense like Morris says he wants to run has to be identified in recruiting, then he has to put on good weight, grow stronger and mature as a player. That is a slow, multi-year process. There are very few offensive linemen who are good enough to come in and start right away, and the ones who do often take a lot of lumps their first year or two.

Great question Bush. Was wondering the same thing today. I don’t think our team sees significant improvement in W/L column or competitiveness until OL is fixed.

1 Like

There are no quick fixes here and that is the big rebuilding problem. BB let it get to near 0, so it is starting from scratch and we see the results of that.

D line can be a little quicker, but you have to recruit those guys in numbers. So far, that has not happened. Until it does, we will continue to see the better teams hang at least 50 on the Hogs.

It amazes me how we go and recruit these gee wizz skill guys and do not bring in enough of the linemen. Right now, we need at least 10 SEC type Olinemen and 6 Dlinemen. I don’t see anything close to that.

How was Coach B, who’s main claim to fame was trench play, ignoring that recruiting his last three years?

I don’t blame coach Morris for that at all.

Coach Morris needs to show more game coaching and development but man he inherited a program from a head coach who basically gave up on major recruiting to win in SEC his last years.

Too many Justin Moore concerts, beach vacations, and Vegas trips.

1 Like

Seems to be the consensus and perhaps most logical kind of explanation of effort to recruit those last years

No excuses for CCM game coaching which deserves criticism but

Why there was no trench recruiting by previous admin is a condemnation of previous guys and AD’s who laughed and left program in bad place.

All said, CCM should be fired for losing to San Jose Tech State Southeast what ever.

But don’t think that he inherited anything from 5 years of a guy who led us to believe he was recruiting trench guys for a trench league.

He gave up a few years prior to leaving.

And the state and program writes him checks.


No, per Matt the Foundation is not writing Bielema any more checks. He breached the terms of his buyout.

I talked to someone in the program that agreed the OL would see some improvement this season, but still would struggle against top tier teams. I think we’ve seen that. The person expects the line to be closer to SEC level next year.

Careful Richard jackson says we have no improvement.

Thanks Richard. I hope so. But then I run the 100 in perhaps 40 these days. A 39 would be an improvement, but what chance would I have at an SEC meet at 39. We are at a 40 100 right now. maybe worse

Scarce player resources: there are not many true DT, OT, and LBs out there. Loads of skilled offensive players, so you can get that part of your team up-to-speed quickly. DTs can play early due to raw size and quickness. OTs rarely play early due to strength. LBs mentioned not because they are necessarily as scarce as the others but because it is the one position UA has recruited least successfully in the SEC era. Lots of DTs have come through and been productive compared to productive LBs.

Cover CBs are pretty rare as well, but we seem to be able to chase one of those down every couple of years.

UA’s OL will look a lot better when they have more than one RB and TE who is a consistent, and capable, blocker. We miss Austin Cantrell. Boyd (and somewhat Whaley) can block but Hammonds and Hayden are not good blockers. You signal things to the defense when they are in the game (Hayden, of course, didn’t suit up Saturday, but Hammonds stood out like a flashing disco ball when he was in the game - it was easy to predict a jet sweep and a fumble). The OL will look better when WRs are more consistent with routes as well. The physicality of SEC CBs is a learning curve for our WRs.

But, there is talent at RB and WR that is not found at OL. We have 2 out there now who compete - Cunningham and Stromberg. The others should be scout teamers. Maybe we are redshirting a couple who can join in next year (Jones, for one, I would hope).

I hear what your saying but I honestly cannot in my wildest dreams see this O-line close next year to Sec level. We have improved minimally at best,maybe two years from now is possible according to recruiting. You obviously have a better handle on this situation than I do and man I hope we are close to Sec level next year, we need to make a big jump down the stretch to get there I think. WPS

I expect the offensive line to make a jump next year. As far asking the players to drop 20 to 30 pounds, that’s not true. They asked them to be at proper body fat ratios for offensive linemen. They do not want fat. They want strength.

It’s EXACTLY what Brandon Burlsworth did when he came to campus. You lose the baby fat. You gain muscle and strength. You can put pounds on a frame, but it must be muscle, not fat.

They have asked offensive linemen to drop fat and add muscle. Two different things. You will see the young linemen in the program gain weight going forward.

I think you will see Brady Latham, Beaux Limmer and Myron Cunningham gain significant strength and muscle over the next six months. I suspect you will see the young ones who have dropped body fat add muscle and strength going forward.

I think Luke Jones is another in the category of young offensive linemen who will help the program. He would have played this year if he hadn’t been forced to redshirt via transfer rules.

I expect Ricky Stromberg to play at 285-290 next year. And, it will be pure muscle. Stromberg is snapping now. He could push Ty Clary at center next year or Luke Jones could do that, too.

I think you will see the nice collection of freshmen defensive linemen make jumps, too. They have the right mix of frames and speed.


Personally I think not bringing in significant numbers of Olineman when the hype was still there was Chad’s single biggest mistake. Against good competition having Burks and Knox with little time to throw to them is not helpful. You can get away with a dominant receiver and less line at SMU and non-power 5 conferences, you can’t in the SEC west. I think Chad is learning a lot of big lessons the hard way. At Clemson he had the whole package. At SMU he was in the right conference for his personnel. At Arkansas I think he took the best players he could get…but he needed more numbers in the Oline. We did bring in Dlineman (could some of them convert?)…doubtful, but it’s not without precedence.

Will the line be better next year? I think so. Will it be good enough to compete against SEC West Dlines? Doubtful.

I don’t know how many you thought he should have brought last year, but it was quite a few. Counting the Luke Jones transfer, he brought in seven (that I’d consider scholarship type players). That’s as many O-linemen in one class that I can ever remember.

Last year’s O-line class included Myron Cunningham, Brady Latham, Beaux Limmer, Dylan Rathke, Chibueze Nwanna, Ricky Stromberg, Luke Jones, Drew Vest and Austin Nix. Technically, Vest, Jones and Nix are walk-ons.

Now maybe you were meaning he should have gotten more in that first year when he was only here for a few days ahead of the early period. Not many O-linemen available at that point. I don’t know why it’s like this, but it seems O-linemen decide early.

Thanks for the line assessment Clay. Really wish you guys had more access to practice to see how the younger guys are progressing but not going to happen. Bad for Morris too as leaves for everyone to reach their own conclusion based on game time results. Morris needs to find a way to win two or three games in November as you indicated in earlier post and maybe he can catch lighting next year. A collapse in Nov and he is in a bad way. I still expect a chance in offensive coordinator but may be proven wrong. If I was Morris and had his background, I would look to do that to send a signal to recruits and fanbase that status quo was not good enough. He has a stubborn streak and loyalty to players and staff so not seeing this as his typical move but would indicate deep plan of action unless AD was forcing him into it. Will see after Mizzou game.

Thanks Clay and good point on the walkons. Just an observation, but I think Oline is the hardest position to predict college performance, hence the need for numbers…or a really good evaluator. The number of walkon lineman that have turned into success stories seems to happen more with Olineman…so hopefully some of ours will become stars. There also seems to be more four stars that flame out…Bielema was unlucky in that regard.

When I referenced numbers - it was both how many, but also how many of quality. We may get lucky, but it seems we signed 2 Juco’s and kids like Stromberg pretty late in the game and none of them appear to be dominators in the making. I like Stromberg, and hopefully Cunningham gets bigger, but who have we signed that we talk about the way we talk about other stars on this team?

I’m sure you’ve seen them in practice but is there a single lineman in the fold that we think has draft potential someday? Maybe it’s too early but past lineman that were great, were being talked about as freshman.

Did not get this included before it got posted.

Morris has shown he can get QB’s and knows the skill sets of the position but he has not had success in getting his QB level of play like he has wanted during the past two years. That is main reason I would get a new coordinator and one who can help gameplay for one line issues better than current