The five starters on Georgia State’s offensive line during Tuesday’s practice don’t have six-pack abs, but they are definitely a leaner, more athletic, more fit group than they were last year.
The starters for some drills were left tackle Sebastian Willer, left guard Alex Stoehr, center Gabe Mobley, right guard Davis Moore and left tackle Lucas Johnson. Willer is a redshirt junior who started four games last year, Stoehr a junior who has started most games the past two years, Mobley a redshirt sophomore who started 12 games last season, Moore a redshirt junior who played in seven games last season and Johnson a sophomore who played in five games. Akil Hawkins is working out at center but may move back to guard once the freshmen arrive in the summer.
The weights online haven’t been updated since last August, and they are the same as the weight listed in the media guide that was printed earlier in the year, so the eye test is the determinant in the changed body shapes since last season.
Coach Trent Miles says the eyes have it.
“We are moving well, more athletic,” he said. “I think we are better athletically. We aren’t fat, sloppy guys. We look more flat-bellied.”
The line on Tuesday didn’t include presumed starters Michael Ivory at one of the tackles and Dom Roldan at left guard. Ivory is recovering from labrum surgery. Roldan was rectifying a paperwork issue with the university. Miles has discussed their weight loss. Roldan has lost 63 pounds since he enrolled in Jan. 2015 and is down to 300 pounds. Ivory has lost more than 20 pounds since enrolling more than two years ago and can better take advantage of his quick feet.
“We lost bad weight now we are carrying good weight and still staying strong,” offensive line coach Harold Etheridge said. “(We are) Leaner and more athletic.”
The group, which started the spring with 12, was down to nine on Tuesday after walk-on Madison Bell suffered a knee injury.
Etheridge said the group is taking “baby steps” each day and is currently slightly better run-blocking than pass-blocking.
The line gave up 33 sacks last season in the passing game and the running game averaged less than 100 yards per game, so there is room for improvement in both areas.
Some of the sacks and some of the lack of being able to run the ball can be traced to the team taking advantage of its passing game, which led the Sun Belt and was ninth-best in FBS. However, the ratio of sacks allowed to passing attempts was approximately the same as the previous season.
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