None of Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe's players should feel comfortable in their position, and that makes Grobe comfortable in his. “We've got competition at so many positions,” Grobe said, “and I think if you ask most coaches they'd tell you their best football teams are made from teams that have competition for jobs.” Here are three position battles to watch:
- Offensive guards and tackles: C Garrick Williams is the only returning starter on the line. At the ACC Kickoff, Grobe said Antonio Ford and converted defensive lineman Frank Souza are expected to fill the two guard spots, with Colin Summers and Steve Chase at tackles. Behind them are a lot of young, inexperienced players. “The key for us right now is to find a third tackle, third guard, and backup center,” Grobe said.
- Inside linebackers: The two ILB positions have the opposite problem as the OL -- an abundance of experienced players fighting playing time. Scott Betros, Riley Haynes, Mike Olson and Justin Jackson all started at least three games last season. Betros missed spring practice after having shoulder surgery. “It's tough watching everybody else play,” Betros said. “It's not nearly as fun being a coach.”
- Safeties: Wake has to replace Cyhl Quarles and Josh Bush, who are both playing in NFL camps. FS Daniel Mack and SS Duran Lowe are the leading candidates to replace them. A.J. Marshall moved from CB and could push Mack. Joe LaBarbera and Des Cooper will also contend for time.
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