Stevens: Lenzmeier's O-Line Is Getting Reps & Getting Better

Aug. 14, 2012

By Richard Stevens - Senior Writer/

RUIDOSO, N.M. - On any football team challenged by a lack of depth, freshmen will be called upon to produce. The 2012 Lobos are a depth challenged team and freshmen will play.

In Lobo freshman Garrett Adcock's case, the calling was all the way to the front line and arguably to the toughest line on which to toss a freshman - the offensive line.

The problem with tossing freshman on the O-line isn't usually their size. If they are an O-lineman, they aren't little. But there is a strength factor that quickly comes into play at the D-I level.

Those D-linemen across the line are mean, ornery, strong and fast. Oh, yeah, that's another factor - speed.

A freshman who can start on a D-I offensive line has to be special. He has to be strong for his age. He has to have good technique, good feet. He has to be tough enough to handle the pounding that will come through a long season.

Garrett Adcock is special.

"What he's doing as a true freshman is pretty impressive," said Jason Lenzmeier, a former special Lobo O-lineman and the UNM O-line coach. "He's a starting guard and a back-up center. That's not an easy calling. He's done a lot for a freshman."

For sure, Adcock has benefited from UNM's lack of depth up front. For sure, Adcock is good. He started as a freshman for Dallas Christian and played guard, center, tackle, defensive tackle, defensive end and was the team's deep snapper. He was ranked a Top 20 Texas lineman by one Texas magazine.

Adcock also has some muscle to go with his 6-foot-2, 270-pound frame. He holds his high school's record in the dead lift (675 pounds), squat (605), power clean (305) and bench press (385).

Coach Lenzmeier will be looking for Adcock to move some defenders on the other side of the ball. There are two other freshmen who have moved into the second tier of the UNM depth chart on the O-line: Dillon Romine, a redshirt freshman, and Johnny Vizcaino, another true freshman.

Again, depth had helped Romine and Vizcaino move up Lenzmeier's depth chart. Lenzmeier took to the practice fields in Ruidoso on Tuesday with 13 huge offensive linemen following him around the grass located a few hundred feet from The Lodge at Sierra Blanca.

Coach Lenz says his two-deep, at this point, looks like this:

Center: Dillon Farrell, 6-5, 290-pound junior; LaMar Bratton, 6-2 282-pound sophomore; Adcock, 6-2, 270-pound, freshman.

Left Guard: Bratton and Calvin McDowney, 6-3, 350-pound, junior.

Right Guard: Adcock and Jamal Price, 6-6, 332-pound, sophomore.

Left Tackle: Darryl Johnson, 6-4, 300-pound junior; Johnny Vizcaino, 6-3, 290-pound freshman.

Right Tackle: Korian Chambers, 6-6, 302-pound, senior; Dillon Romine, 6-7, 275-pound freshman.

That's a pretty young depth chart -- one senior.

There has been some mixing and matching in this group, but Lenzmeier says: "You want eight or nine to be ready. You want different groups to have chemistry and bonding. But the best five will be out there."

It's possible that Lenzmeier's top five will see a lot of action in 2012. "I played every snap of my Lobo career. Never came out," said Lenzmeier. "And I think most guys want to stay out there. But you have to be prepared with different combinations in case something happens.

"We are down in numbers, so the guys are getting a lot of reps. They are coming out with spark and energy and you always want that. Are we the most talented group in the world? By no means. But we plan to come out with a workman's attitude and be physical.

"The guys have been busting their butts out here and we are getting better every day."