Just in time for fall camp to open, Bobby Petrino and the Louisville football team have added another offensive lineman in an effort to overcome the huge gap Charlie Strong's last two recruiting classes left on the offensive line. Toriano Roundtree, all 6'8, 295 lbs of him, has enrolled at Louisville and will be eligible to play right away. Roundtree was originally thought to be a possible class of 2016 January enrollee but completed all necessary coursework at Eastern Arizona College and will instead be on the roster this fall. Rounder originally played high school football at PK Yonge High School in Gainesville, FL.
Like Kevin Austin, Jeremy Smith, and Drew Bailey, Roundtree is a junior college signee that will have three years of playing time left.
If you're one of those who is perhaps unnerved by the use of junior college signees, I sympathize. We all remember the Kragthorpe years. At least sprinkling in three-year JUCOs helps soften the typical downside of junior college guys being in and out in just two years. But in the case of the offensive line, I'm not at all sure Petrino and the coaching staff had a choice. Consider with me the offensive line signing classes Charlie Strong brought to Louisville in 2012 and 2013. These are the guys that should be juniors and third year sophomores on the 2015 team:
Louisville was fortunate to be able to redshirt two freshman signees last year, bring in three this year, and then supplement them with two three-year guys and two traditional two-year JUCOs. They had to do this because of the nine guys signed in 2012 and 2013, six of them are no longer on the team or never arrived at all. There's no doubting that experience (and therefore execution) will surely be an issue early on. Nevertheless, there are at least enough competent bodies on hand to not worry about depth going forward.