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The Cardinal Countdown: 73 Days Until Kickoff

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NCAA Football: Louisville at Wake Forest Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

#73 Mekhi Becton

Class: Sophomore

Ht/Wt: 6-7/359

Position: Offensive Line

Hometown: Highland Springs, VA

Twitter: @BigTicket73

Thoughts: One of the frustrating things about the countdown is that true freshman who don’t enroll in the program early aren’t added to the official roster until the summer update, as we saw yesterday, and are sometimes missed on the countdown. This was the case of Mekhi Becton last season, and therefore you had to wait a full calendar year for me to tell you that Mekhi Becton is one very large human being. Sorry for the delay.

Becton came into the program last year as a Top O-line prospect and even though his size was a big selling point, the Cards saw his athleticism early in their recruitment as well, watching him run up and down the floor and rip off a dunk or three for his high school basketball squad. Once Becton committed and got on campus the consensus reaction from the rest of the team was “wow, that’s a big dude”, but Becton wasn’t done. A few weeks into his college career Becton got in the weight room and started adding additional strength to his large frame. I still remember Kenny Thomas talking about him last fall saying that Becton has no idea how strong he really is. Well, I think he figured it out.

Becton played in 12 games last year on the line, starting 10 of them as a true freshman just months removed from high school, and he played damn good. How good? Well, Pro Football Focus, who watches every single play of every single game and grades each player had him ranked as the #1 freshman performer in the country through five games.

Not too bad.

Mekhi played extremely well last season and he will certainly keep his spot at tackle heading into 2018. If everything holds true the Cards will likely have three Sophomore starters on the line this season. If Petrino has his way Becton could also get his first start in 2018…at fullback. Mekhi ran a few plays this spring at the position and as one might imagine bringing down the 6-7, 350 man was a small miracle for any defender. As long as he stays healthy we can run Becton out there at linebacker for all I care, after all, it’s no secret that we will probably only get to watch him a couple more years. Let’s enjoy Becton while we’ve got him, he’s a special talent and another NFL caliber player coming out of the program.

***

Game 6: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Key Player: TaQuon Marshall, Quarterback, Senior

I guess if we’re being honest the real answer here is just the triple option in general, but since Marshall is the one steering that ship, I’ll be hanging out on the poop deck all game, if you catch my drift. If you look at Georgia Tech’s win-loss totals over the last few years it’s not the most intimidating game on the schedule, but a deeper dive shows that the Yellow Jackets are always a tough out, battling with teams who are much more talented and much more athletic until the final quarter because of that stupid triple option package. It’s a headache for coaches, it’s a headache for players, and for opposing fan bases it’s a vestibular migraine. “Why can’t you stop this, they run the same play?!” We can scream it as loud as we want but TaQuon is going to keep doing it and it’s the job of a inexperienced Cardinal front to stop it. Last season the Ramblin Wreck ran up and down the field, finishing the season 1st in the ACC and 5th in the country in rushing yardage. The Cards have been lucky to avoid the Yellow Jackets since entering the conference but that ends in 2018. Maybe I’m being overly dramatic, but I’ll take a win any way we can geek one in Week 6. (P.S. The Cards have to get em’ on a short week.)

Sweet Tweet:

O-line, fullback, post up center, slugger out of the 3 hole, 100m breast stroke, goaltender, shot put….Play. Him. Everywhere.