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Cavalry on way to bolster Wildcats’ offensive line

Citizen Staff Writer



Arizona tackle Adam Grant is healthy and ready to once again help take care of the right side of the Wildcats’ offensive line.

That still leaves a big void on the left side for the Wildcats, who are losing Eben Britton to the the NFL draft.

“We feel like if we can get that position solidified that this line could be every bit as productive as we had a year ago,” Arizona coach Mike Stoops said. “We have some young talented players who need to just play a little bit more.”

Grant played at right tackle halfway through the 2008 season before a hand injury kept him out of action. He watched James Tretheway take over at the position.

Tretheway’s departure puts Grant into the forefront, a position he welcomes after recovering from a couple of knee surgeries during his career. Grant will battle redshirt freshman Trace Biskin and junior college transfer Shane Zink for the starting job.

Phillip Garcia will get the opening nod at left tackle. At 6 feet 7 inches, 325 pounds, Garcia will battle the likes of junior college transfer Jack Julsing and Jack Baratz.

Garcia, recovering from anterior cruciate ligament surgery in September, has not been cleared for physical work during the spring.

“I hope to start. I’m going to work my butt off to get healthy,” Garcia said. “The offensive line is going to be as good as we have been, if not better.

“We are going to miss Eben a lot, but we have the guys to step up and do the job right. We have pretty good experience, but we can get better.”

The line, although not flashy, was steady with physical play, enabling UA to rush for more than 2,000 yards last season. It allowed 28 sacks in more than 400 passing attempts.

At left guard, Colin Baxter replaced the injured Blake Kerley after the fourth game of the season. Mike Diaz, who is out for at least a week with an ankle sprain, has moved to that spot.

The Wildcats are expected to replace right guard Joe Longacre with sophomore Vaughn Dotsy.


When: Through April 8

Spring Game: April 4, Arizona Stadium, time TBA

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