On the offensive line:
We’ve got four starters coming back. We lost Sam Schwartzstein, who
directed the ship, but there are lots of guys who are competing at
center. Conor McFadden, Khalil Wilkes, and the younger guys, all
Outside, Andrus Peat is a great young tackle, as is Kyle Murphy,
and then Josh Garnett and Johnny Caspers are great young guards
who have made a lot of strides since the end of freshman season.
Any of them could step on the field for us.
I ask about this offensive line’s potential and whether it
could compare to some of the great Stanford lines in recent
It definitely can. It’s one of most talented lines we’ve had in a
while, since David DeCastro and Jonathan Martin. It’s similar in
talent across the board. I’m excited to physically dominate.
Mike Bloomgren is an awesome coach, a hands-on coach. He has
techniques he’d like us to use, but his thing is whatever you need
to get the job done within rules of the game, I’m willing to let
you try that [in practice, and prove that it can work in a game.]
[Comment: This makes such sense to me. Everyone is different, so
their techniques will naturally vary slightly. As long as it
reliably works, no need to force players into preconceived molds].
I ask about breakout players:
Michael Rector, who you saw in the spring game, can have a great
year as a deep threat. Luke Kaumatule you have heard a lot of talk
about and he can make a lot of plays for us. On defense, Blake Martinez has been a great asset and that role should expand.
Yankey had praise for some of his other teammates too. In
particular, former walk-on David Parry continues to shine:
On a play-by-play basis, [Parry] is one of the best nose tackles
in the Pac-12, if not the nation. He’s very talented, strong,
physical and his technique is great.
Obviously, the rest of our defense is good as well. Henry Anderson is 285 and moving well. … A.J. Tarpley is really crafty,
good at being slippery, and then Shayne is always a challenge
On personal goals:
[To be] close to perfect, close to 100 percent. To make my block
Quick takes on starting the season:
- I’m excited to have three weeks in camp to get the pulling in.
- It’s really strange. We haven’t had a bye week to start season
before, so we’ll watch everyone start. We’ll be hanging out. I
wish we could start earlier, but that’s the way it goes. [Shaw
echoed that a week one bye wasn’t his preference either and only
came out via an unfortunate confluence of events. Stay tuned].
- San Jose State is a very good team. They’re something we’re
definitely going to be ready for. I feel we didn’t play our best
game last year. That’s an extremely good opponent week one. [Us
media and fans pooh-poohed when the Stanford players and coaches
heaped praise upon SJSU after Stanford’s 20-17 victory last
year. SJSU finished in the top-25, so maybe they were onto
- There are lots of questions on offense this year as opposed to
years past. We had good, proven tight ends leave, so it’s time
for tight ends to step up like Luke. We need wide receivers to
step up too.
On a lighter note:
- Last year, the defensive front seven popularized the "party in
the backfield.” Yankey thanks Coach Mike Sanford for coining the
offensive equivalent, which is that the OL will have a "rager in
the end zone."
- The defense came from behind to win the “Fat Bowl”, the
offensive line/defensive line scrimmage, though Yankey thinks it
was “definitely a game changer” that he wasn’t able to
participate. Jordan Watkins was the game’s MVP.
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