Monday, October 28, 2013

Three Offensive Linemen to Watch - 2015 and 2016

      Over the weekend I watched three offensive linemen do their thing. Being an old, old center, I have tremendous appreciation for what offensive linemen do. Now, what I find most amazing is how tall and athletic OL guys have become. OL Ted Stieber (2015) from Akron Hoban and OL Hunter Littlejohn (2015) from Olentangy Liberty have really worked in the off season to make themselves two of my top OL guys in the Class of 2015. Also have to mention OL Liam Eichenberger (2016) from St Ignatius.
      Hunter Littlejohn was okay last year, but I wondered if he would get big enough. Listed 6'4-270, he has definitely made himself big enough. Long and extends his arms. Really good explosion off LOS. Good bender. Good feet. Runs well for size. Athletic. Could see him move to center on the next level. Last year, I questioned effort at times. No questions this year.  Plays every down and plays with an attitude. With another year of off season work, should be dominating next year. Should be one of my top OL guys in the Ohio Class of 2015.
      From the offensive linemen who I have seen this fall, Ted Stieber may the most improved one of the group. Last year as a sophomore, he was huge, but when I saw him play, that was it--- he was just huge. Listed 6'6 and 300+. Good feet , but was slow off the LOS. Did not finish plays. Did not have good first two steps in pass drops. Last summer, I saw much the same. In fact, I made a comment to him last summer. Now, Ted Stieber is listed 6'6-300, but has slimmed down and moved some of the fat to muscle. Excellent bender. Finishes blocks. Blocks second level really well. Really good pass drops. Needs to improve feet on pass protection, but will be fine. Good arm extension. Most of all, he plays physical, almost with a nastiness. A possible left tackle on next level. Much like Hunter Littlejohn, with another off season, Ted could be a dominating top five OL guy for me in the Ohio Class of 2015.
       Sophomore Liam Eichenberg mans the left tackle position for St Ignatius. Listed 6'5-260, he has the long frame and long arms. Runs really well. Really athletic. Finishes blocks. Good bender. Good hips. Watched him run the basketball court with ease last winter. Last summer, I did not see everything that the OSU coaches saw at the OSU Camp to offer him as a freshman. After watching him play Saturday, I have now. Athletic enough that he will be able to play different positions on the offensive line. Unlimited potential.
       With some of the other offensive linemen whom I have seen this fall, the Ohio Class of 2015, may have some of the tall tackles that every college coach wants. From where I saw him last year, Ted Stieber has come along way. When I talked with him last night, I was silly with compliments. He can be that good.

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