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LFN's 2015 Spring Preview - Quarterbacks and Tight Ends

Coach Coen talking to team (Morning Call)
With a depleted spring roster, there were some doubts that Lehigh would be able to have a full-blown spring game.

Late this week, though, it was confirmed that the Brown and White game was still on.

It will take place at 10:00AM at Murray Goodman stadium, and will be streamed on the Patriot League Network with Matt Kerr and Mike Yadush providing commentary.

(It will also feature stream-of-consciousness tweeting from this guy.)

"Andy Coen is scheduling an abbreviated session for Saturday's 10 a.m. intrasquad scrimmage," Keith Groller of The Morning Call reported today, "with just 40 to 45 live plays plus various drills as his team wants to preserve its limited roster entering the final week of the spring session."

Still, the abbreviated scrimmage will allow a look, however brief, of the three quarterbacks that will enter the 2015 season's depth chart.


Junior QB Nick Shafnisky remains the No. 1 guy, despite the fact he's been rehabbing his arm over the spring session and hasn't passed the ball.

Coach Coen told Keith Groller that despite the fact he hasn't thrown, he's remained very involved with the team during the spring session.

"Would I rather have Nick out here and doing everything? Absolutely," Coen told him. "But our young quarterbacks really can't get enough work. They've been up and down and for Nick it has been beneficial for him to sit and watch. He can put himself into certain situations and see how he would react."

That's a very good thing, Coen noted, as this spring session hasn't been as focused on physical practices as in years past.

"He has stayed very grounded with his teammates," Coen continued.  "He has done a great job in all of the meetings. He's still a big leader of this team. We just need to get him healthy so he can come out ready to play."

Since Shaf cannot throw, it means that the two quarterbacks that will be participating in the abbreviated full squad scrimmage are sophomore QB Matt Timochenko and sophomore QB Brenadan Craven.

Timochenko was listed as the backup to Shafnisky last year, and only came in at QB to attempt one pass - a hail mary attempt at the end of the loss to Monmouth, 28-21, that fell incomplete.

A late-blooming quarterback at Wilson High School in West Lawn, PA, the word is he has a strong arm and undoubtedly is benefiting from the work this spring.

Timochenko seems to be the great beneficiary of the decision on Shafnisky, who seems like he will be lining up with the first-team.

Craven was an extremely successful quarterback out of Boston College High School, however, and he's certain to also use the spring game as a way to highlight his strengths as well - and, potentially, work his way to becoming the next guy up.

The spring game will be Lehigh Nation's first good look at these two QBs, and even with an abbreviated workload it will be a good look at the guys who are an injury away from the top spot.

At tight end, Lehigh graduates two starters, TE Tyler Coyle and TE Dylan Colgate, but also return some players that have gotten plenty of playing time over the course of last season.

Senior TE Chris Ruhl got plenty of time in on offense last season, so it would seem that he's in the No. 1 slot, with junior TE Zach Bucklin at the No. 2.  Sophomore TE Matthew Baur, a former quarterback that has bulked up to 250 lbs, and sophomore TE Drew Paulsen seem to be right behind them on the depth chart as well.  One thing that remains to be seen is which one of these four players might have the best hands as a receiving threat.

LFN's unofficial guess at the spring depth chart:

QB: 
1st: Sophomore QB Matt Timochenko
2nd: Sophomote QB Brendan Craven

TE:
1st: Senior TE Chris Ruhl, junior TE Zach Bucklin
2nd: Sophomore TE Michael Baur. sophomore TE Drew Paulsen

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