2014 UTSA Preview: What You Need To Know

Posted May 30, 2014

Preview 2014 - What You Need To Know About UTSA (Getty Images)

2014 UTSA Preview

What You Need To Know...

- 2014 UTSA Preview 
2014 Depth Chart & Unit Rankings To Come This Summer

What You Need To Know About The Offense: One of the benefits of promoting Jeff Brohm to head coach is that he'll have another season to mentor QB Brandon Doughty, the Hilltopper with the most to prove in 2014. Doughty flashed hints of potential last year, but he was far too erratic for the Sun Belt's most turnover-prone program. The Toppers need Doughty to evolve, or else his job could be in jeopardy. The vaunted running game will be in flux, as Leon Allen prepares to replace prolific RB Antonio Andrews, and three new offensive linemen get inserted into the lineup. OT Forrest Lamp and OG Cam Clemmons will be anchors in the trenches, but they're new linemates will need to get up to speed in a hurry. Doughty will have no shortage of experienced receivers with which to connect when he drops back to throw this fall. Save for Andrews out of the backfield, nearly everyone who caught a pass in 2013 is back On the Hill.

What You Need To Know About The Defense: The Hilltopper staff will dust off the heavy machinery in August. It's time to resume the rebuilding process on defense. Gone from a season ago are seven starters, the top five tacklers and four of the five All-Sun Belt performers. The lone returning all-star is senior CB Cam Thomas, who'll be joined on the two-deep by a bunch of fresh faces, the most promising of which is sophomore S Marcus Ward. Ward was a starter in his debut out of Vestavia Hills (Ala.) High School, but had his season derailed by an injury. The linebackers will be new now that tackling machines Andrew Jackson and Xavius Boyd have departed. It's up front, even after the graduation of DE Bar'ee Boyd, that Western Kentucky has its best chance to dictate the tempo of games. With Gavin Rocker on the outside and Devante Terrell emerging from the interior, the team has the building blocks for success. Rocker and Terrell, though, might have to exceed expectations in 2014, because of the dearth of proven players behind them.

Players You Need To Know

1. FS Triston Wade, Sr.
UTSA was much better against the pass in the second-half of 2013 than it was in the early going. Wade, as much as any other Roadrunner, fueled the improvement. He started every game last fall to bring his career total to 28, and he was a team captain in the final nine contests. Wade had two interceptions and a team-high 94 tackles to land on the All-Conference USA Second Team, one year after being voted to the All-WAC First team.

2. WR Kam Jones, Sr.
The offense wants to do a better job of getting the ball in Jones' hands … again. He's the Roadrunners' best all-around weapon, weaving in and out of defenses as a receiver and a runner. Jones not only led the team with 34 catches for 345 yards and a score, but he also carried the ball 29 times for 302 yards and five more touchdowns. He's a 5-11, 190-pound dancer out of the slot, making people miss if they're unable to hit him squarely.

3. OG Scott Inskeep, Sr.
All five starters are back for a seasoned UTSA O-line that's yielded just 30 sacks over the past 24 games. None of the holdovers is as accomplished as Inskeep, who earned Second Team All-WAC in 2012 and Second Team All-Conference USA in 2013. This past season, the nasty 6-4, 300-pound run blocker from McAllen, Tex. was second to veteran C Nate Leonard in knockdowns and second behind LT Cody Harris in overall grade.

4. OT Cody Harris, Sr.
The versatile Harris made a successful full-time switch to left tackle in 2013, starting all 12 games and earning honorable mention All-Conference USA. The 6-5, 300-pounder is more of a natural guard, but his footwork is so good that it allows him to seal off edge rushers. Harris had the highest grade among the 2013 linemen, all of whom are back in San Antonio for another season.

5. SS Nic Johnston, Sr.
UTSA continues to get outstanding production from Johnston, who mans 'Dawg', the strong safety in this system. He's finished third on the team in tackles in back-to-back years, notching 70 stops a year ago. The hard-hitting senior has packed muscle on to his 6-2, 210-pound frame, which allows him to hit like a linebacker. With 29 career starts behind him, Johnston will again be one of the most active Roadrunner defenders.

6. RB David Glasco, Sr.
Now that QB Eric Soza and RB Evans Okotcha have graduated, Glasco is the veteran of the backfield. He's started 28 career games, including eight in 2013, when he rushed for 496 yards and five scores on 95 carries to lead the team in rushing for a second straight year. At 5-10 and 200 pounds, Glasco runs hard and with an attitude, using a solid stiff arm to ward off tacklers and pick up additional yards after contact.

7. DE Codie Brooks, Soph.
A lot of schools missed on Brooks. UTSA is just thrilled he found a soft landing spot in San Antonio. The 6-1, 250-pound pass rusher didn't have an FBS scholarship when he was leaving Seguin (Tex.) High School, but he has one now. He was mature beyond his years as a five-game starter in 2013, making 34 tackles, four pass breakups and a team-best five sacks. Brooks not only moves well, but his fundamentals as a pass rusher belie his relative lack of experience.

8. DE Robert Singletary, Sr.
The Roadrunners landed a cornerstone pass rusher when Singletary transferred from Baylor to UTSA. The 6-2, 250-pounder is still adjusting to the defensive line after beginning his career at linebacker, but the learning curve started flattening last fall. Despite playing in just eight games, and starting six, Singletary made 30 tackles, two forced fumbles and five sacks to tie for the team lead. With a full season of work, he's eyeing a sharp production spike in his final year.

9. TE Cole Hubble, Sr.
UTSA is once again in good shape at tight end, with Hubble expected to take on a more expanded role now that Jeremiah Moeller has graduated. Despite starting just five games in each of the last two seasons, Hubble caught 35 passes for 582 yards and six touchdowns over that time. While the 6-2, 235-pounder won't match Moeller as a blocker, he has soft hands and the downfield speed to exploit seams on defenses.

10. CB Bennett Okotcha, Jr.
Okotcha was one of the pleasant defensive surprises a year ago, popping the cork on his Roadrunner career by earning honorable mention All-Conference USA recognition. The 6-0, 195-pounder shook off some rust from two years of inactivity to lead the team with 10 pass breakups. Although Okotcha still needs to improve in many areas, including sticking to receivers in the slot, he has a high ceiling that he'll continue to approach in 2014.

- 2014 UTSA Preview