The Stanford Cardinal won their second-straight Pac-12 title in 2013 thanks to another dominant season from their offensive line. However, David Shaw will face some serious turnover on the offensive front as four starting offensive linemen, including two-time All-American David Yankey, will not be back in 2014. The offensive line is the identity of the Stanford offense and they are fortunate to have a wealth of young talent ready to step in next fall.
Back in 2012, Stanford brought in a massive haul of talented offensive line recruits, including five-star offensive tackle Andrus Peat (who started every game this season), four-star tackles Kyle Murphy, Nick Davidson, and Graham Shuler, four-star guard Joshua Garnett, and three-star guards Brandon Fanaika and Johnny Caspers. They’ll also add four-star tackle Casey Tucker, the No. 5 rated offensive lineman in the 2014 class, in this year’s recruiting class, giving the Cardinal a wealth of young talent to reload their physical offensive line with.
Peat will become the leader of the group as the only returning starter in 2014 while Garnett and Murphy have seen playing time in Stanford’s multiple jumbo sets. Now they’ll transition into the starting lineup in 2014 looking to continue the physical identity that has helped Stanford get to the top of the Pac-12 and become a national power in college football. They have some big shoes to fill, of course, but have the depth of talent in place to avoid a serious letdown as they try to for a three-peat in the Pac-12.
There’s no secret to how Stanford has built their team and how they will try to beat teams in 2014. A strong and physical offensive line is the foundation for any success the Cardinal achieve and how well the new offensive linemen step into the starting lineup will determine just how far Stanford goes next season.