The biggest addition to Temple’s offensive line, literally, can be seen these days at right guard, where Maryland transfer Pete White expects to make an immediate impact.
Listed at 6-4 and 330 pounds in Temple’s media guide (coach Matt Rhule says the grad student’s weight is about 15 pounds north of that designation), White is impossible to miss during the Owls’ practices.
Ranked No. 5 nationally by Scout.com among high school guards in 2008, White has never lived up to his lofty status. However, he has easily moved into the starting lineup at Temple, a spot where it’s an almost certainty he’ll have when the Owls open the season at Notre Dame on Aug. 31.
“He’s a heck of a kid. He was really well coached by his last offensive line coach. He has a lot of potential,” Temple coach Matt Rhule said. “The biggest thing I like about him is he doesn’t come in and say, ‘well that’s not how I do this.’ He just comes in and does whatever we say and he does it really well.
“He’s trying to play himself into shape,” Rhule continued. “He is not a fat man – he’s a big man. Playing at our speed and tempo, he’s doing everything possible to make sure he’s ready for the 31st.”
Rhule wants to have at least seven offensive linemen that he can turn to when the Owls begin the 2013 season. Asked to name a starting lineup right now, Rhule said that playing alongside White would be senior left tackle Zack Hooks (6-6, 300-pounds); senior left guard Jeff Whittingham (6-2, 305); sophomore center Kyle Friend (6-2, 305); and sophomore right tackle Eric Lofton (6-5, 300).
Others guys in the mix are injured vets Cody Booth, 6-5, 285, a converted tight end (toe) and Sean Boyle, 6-5, 305 (shoulder). Both have missed some practice time with injuries but Rhule is optimistic they will be back soon. Also in the mix is freshman Dion Dawkins.
“The key is to get the best five out there and have seven or eight that you can play in a game with,” Rhule said.