The Minnesota Golden Gophers are looking for a rebound season in 2013 and they will rely on the strength of their offensive line to carry them there. During Minnesota’s most successful seasons, they have had a big, physical offensive lines that pushed defenses around. They’ve gotten away from that formula in recent years, but this could be the season they return to form.
Last year, they were forced to shuffle their offensive line all season long to cover up for injuries and chemistry issues and the offense sputtered because of it. This year, they return a strong core of veterans who are experienced and healthy supplemented with some strong newcomers to give the line depth and create a position of strength.
With Tommy Olson, Zach Mottla, Caleb Bak and Zac Epping will be back in 2013 to give head coach Jerry Kill a strong group of veterans to build around. They’ll also add former Ohio State Buckeyes‘ center Brian Bobek, a highly regarded interior lineman. The Gophers also get Jonah Pirsig, Ben Laurer and Isaac Hayes coming into the fold after redshirting in 2012.
With this group, Minnesota can get back to their winning formula of big, strong offensive linemen beating up opposing defenses. The Gophers need to get back to their hard-nosed, old-school offensive line play if they hope to make some noise in Big Ten play next season. With questions prevalent in nearly every other position on the offense, having a strong foundation along the offensive line will go a long ways in improving Minnesota’s fortunes in 2013.