BOWLING GREEN — There were few, if any, surprises found on the Bowling Green State University football team’s two-deep announced on Friday.
The Falcons’ depth chart for the opener Friday at Western Kentucky includes five returning starters on defense, five starters back on offense, and starting place kicker Tyler Tate.
On defense the only position that does not have a clear starter is at middle linebacker, where the possible starters are senior Paul Senn and redshirt freshman Nate Locke. Both have seen significant action with the first team defense during practice.
The defense includes eight potential senior starters, even if Senn is not included: defensive ends Bryan Thomas and Charlie Walker, defensive tackle Zach Colvin, outside linebackers D.J. Lynch and Gabe Martin, cornerback Jude Adjei-Barimah, and safeties Brian Sutton and Ryland Ward.
On offense the only starting position that appears to be up for grabs is at center, where sophomore J.J. Beggan and freshman Tim McAuliffe both are listed at co-starters.
The second team running back spot behind junior Travis Greene also has an “or” listed as junior Andre Givens and sophomore Fred Coppet both are listed.
The two-deep also reflects a recent position switch as senior Clay Rolf is listed as the backup to senior Chris Pohlman at tight end. Rolf is an Eastwood High School product who played tackle last fall after spending most of his BG career as a tight end.
The other local players on the depth chart besides Rolf are Southview High School graduate Austin Valdez, a redshirt freshman who will back up Lynch at one linebacker spot, and Findlay’s Joe Davidson, a redshirt freshman who will take over the punting duties.
There are two true freshmen on Bowling Green’s depth chart. One is wide receiver Roger Lewis, who played at Jirah Prep in Matthews, N.C., last fall and is listed as one of the Falcons’ four starting wide receivers along with senior Heath Jackson and sophomores Gehrig Dieter and Ronnie Moore.
The other is cornerback Nick Johnson, who graduated from Canton’s Timken High School in December and enrolled at Bowling Green in time to take part in spring practices.
It’s also interesting to note that BG’s starting offensive two-deep depth chart — which lists 12 positions because it includes a tight end as well as four receivers — includes just three seniors among the 25 spots: Jackson, Pohlman, and backup left tackle Darion Delaney.