MADISON — When
Joel Stave takes his first snap of the season against No. 3
Alabama, a new-look offensive line will be trying to protect the
Wisconsin senior quarterback.
the only two returning starters are redshirt senior Tyler Marz at
left tackle and redshirt junior Dan Voltz at center.
But at a school
where the offensive linemen are viewed as rock stars, Stave didn't
appear to be concerned about who would be helping keep him upright
while also paving the way for projected starting running back
are two offensive line positions that you'd want returning, it
would be the center and the left tackle," Stave said. "I
know we lost some very good seniors on the offensive line.
the guys we have coming back, coupled with some young guys I think
who are really ready to step into a big-time role, I think we will
be pretty good up there."
succeeding record-setting running back Melvin Gordon.
reload. The way we recruit these linemen and the way they come in,
they know the expectations of what you need to be," Clement
said. "How you need to carry yourself and how big you need to
be able to play on a Wisconsin line takes a lot. It's not easy.
You've got to do whatever it takes to be consistent."
needed for a trio of fifth-year seniors in left guard Kyle
Costigan, guard/center Dallas Lewallen and right tackle Rob
said plenty of competition in training camp will help keep the
Badgers' tradition of stellar line play intact.
guys have to step up and be that guy," Voltz said. "This
year we've got three (starting) spots to fill. But we've got three
guys potentially who are going to step in and do a great
there are more questions than answers at this time but is
confident it will be business as usual once the season begins.
obvious that we don't have as much depth as we've had in the
past," he said. "This spring we had some time to work
out some wrinkles. This fall, it's going to be huge to sort these
guys out, to have them make some strides.
will be young but they're still good players. Michael Deiter's had
some experience here. Dan (Voltz) is going to be a good leader for
those inside guys to bring them along and hopefully I can be a
great leader for the outside, the tackles, to work with them and
focus on their technique."
coordinator/offensive line coach Joe Rudolph couldn't wait to get
started determining who will join Marz and Voltz on the field.
"We have a
good pool to find the right guys to fill in around them,"
Rudolph said of Marz and Voltz. Rudolph worked with several
different options on Wednesday during the team's first day in
The No. 1 unit
included Marz and Voltz along with senior Ray Ball at left guard
and Dieter, a redshirt freshman, at right guard with redshirt
freshman Beau Benzschawel at right tackle.
work with the No. 1 offense for the first time in camp, in place
of redshirt sophomore Hayden Biegel, who was with the first unit
most of the spring.
Deiter also saw
time at center, while freshman Jon Dietzen worked at left guard,
redshirt junior Walker Williams at right guard and redshirt
freshman Jacob Maxwell at left tackle.
Walker Williams have been in the program for a number of
years," coach Paul Chryst said. "Can they elevate? And a
lot of it is being consistent. I think they've shown both care a
ton. I mean, I love that part of it. They work and then there is
going to be a group of young guys that need to step in."