Often times, when you judge offensive interior lineman, comparisons are made with Wrestlers. The Grapplers. Not Randy “Macho Man” Savage wrestling. Not Ric Flair wrestling.
No, we’re talking about those guys in singlets, on mats, stinking of BO and BenGay. One man, rolling around with another man. Legs and arms locked in passionate embrace. We’re talking…Louden Swain.
At least that’s what BK would claim. Freestyle Wrestlers = Offensive Guards. Greco Roman Wrestlers = Centers. What do you think about that Arkansas G Mitch Petrus? My guess he’s too busy tying the all-time bench press record at the combine to worry about all that wrestling bullshit.
Yeah, BK is always trying to connect some unrelated personal experience to that of high-tech, highly focused draft analysis. “Oh No, I hurt my back, I need a steel rod put in, whoa is me” (Matt Tennant, Boston College); “Oh No, they didn’t pick me to win a magazine contest because some other kid submitted his entry using no capital letters or punctuation marks, whoa is me” (Joe Asamoah, Illinois); “Oh No, I really thought that Mexican stripper liked me but now she’s with another guy, whoa is me” (Sergio Render, Virginia Tech); “Oh No, the Daily Show didn’t think my clips were funny enough and now I’m stuck waiting tables in Red Bank, whoa is me” (Eric Olsen, Notre Dame); “Oh No, my mom keeps trying to make me purchase real estate in Manalapan but I still think the market’s overpriced, whoa is me” (Vladimir Ducasse, UMass).
Well, I think I speak for everyone when I say – enough with the wrestling references BK – why don’t we just watch this video about Idaho’s Mike Iupati and then go to the rankings.
It was tough sledding for the University of Minnesota’s Brian Williams after being drafted by the New York Super Bowl Bound Football Giants with the 18th overall pick in the 1989 NFL draft. At the time it was thought that Williams would supplant the aging Pro Bowler Bart Oats. Yet in his first 5 seasons in the league Williams, started only 8 games as the Giants basically split time between him and Oates while also occasionally sneaking him in at guard. And then one Wednesday morning during training camp prior to the 1994 season Brian Williams was told a story. It was about a spunky, short, prematurely balding high-school wrestler who a few years previously walked onto the mat to face the Brian Shute of New Jersey wrestling – the legendary Catholic Ron Sujohn. That short spunky wrestler’s first few years in the trenches were as frustrating as Williams’ with the Giants. Like Williams, he spent time on the bench, he battled injuries, he got action a little bit here and there. He had been pinned more times than Annabelle Chong and like Chong, he was given no chance to become a respectable member of society. But one day, in a cramped, humid and sweaty gym, that spunky wrestler rose to the occassion and showed the world that maybe, just maybe, for just this one time, HE TOO could be the star. And on that night, that spunky wrestler BEAT Ron Sujohn. And his name…B-K. Upon hearing that story, Brian Williams would rededicate himself to the sport and emerge as the Giants best offensive lineman and one of the best centers in the league starting 56 games over the next 4 years before injuries derailed his career. In an ironic twist of fate, BK would end up losing in the first round of the State Tournament that same year and never wrestled again.
TOP 8 CENTERS/GUARDS
Mike Iupati, Idaho
Up until this week, I had Pouncey rated ahead of Iupati but as I take a closer look it’s awfully hard to make that argument. Iupati can start right now.
Maukrice Pouncey, Florida
The thought is he’s not ready to be an NFL center right now, but he has Pro Bowl skills and at the very least he should be able to slide in and start at guard somewhere.
John Jerry, Ole Miss
This guy’s got bloodlines that make the Manning’s blush. Two cousins in the league and his brother was drafted first last year. If he’s there in the late 2nd he’s a good grab.
Jon Asamoah, Illinois
I’ve got no problem with Jon other than the fact that he leaves the “h” out of his first name and he didn’t perform at the combines which makes him a NFWTFDJOATHI on the BK-o-Meter (Non-Factor Who The Fuck Does Jon Asamoah Think He is).
Vladimir Ducasse, UMass
Lots of buzz around this 332 pound glass of Haitian Re-Inforced Concrete. But he’s as raw as sushi in Nebraska and frankly I like my guards to jump higher than 26 inches.
Shaun Lauvao, Arizona State
I don’t know a lot about Shaun Lauvao, but I do know that the version of the national anthem Demi Lovato sang before a football game last year was TERRIBLE.
J.D. Walton, Baylor
The only other true center on the board who merits a mention. He muscled an impressive 34 reps at the combine.
Mike Johnson, Alabama
Upon entering UofA, he had a 4.0 GPA and hit it with a 27 on the ACT. However sometimes intelligence can play against you as he may overthink run blocking schemes and try to redesign them during a play.
BK LUCKY NUMBER 9
Matt Tennant, Boston College
BK is all over Boston College center Matt Tennant because he shows “a UFC-like Intensity” and “knows how to play in a phone booth” which could come in handy for him after he’s cut in practice by whoever nabs him in the 6th round and he needs to apply for a job with AT&T.