football

Spring Preview: Tight Ends

1162912
TherewillbebattlesforstartingjobsatmanypositionsthisspringatAuburn,buttightendwon'tbeoneofthem.
PhilipLutzenkirchenreturnsforhisseniorseasonalreadyholdingtheschool'scareertouchdownreceptionsrecordbyatightendwith14.
"I'mveryexcitedabout'Lutz',"tightendscoachJayBoulwaresaid."He'sasenior.I'vehadhimsincehewasapuppy,atruefreshman,andhehasdevelopednicely.Hereallyhas."
InthreeseasonsatAuburn,Lutzenkirchenhas44receptionsfor489yardsandthe14scores.Asajuniorin2011,hewasnamedsecond-teamAll-SECaftercatching24passesfor238yardsandateam-highseventouchdowns.His24receptionswerethird-highestontheteam.
Butcatchingthefootballisn'ttheonlythingLutzenkirchendoeswell.
"Everyoneknowshehasgreathands,butI'vebeenreallyimpressedwithhisdevelopmentasablockingtightend,"saidBoulware."He'sareallygoodblockernowatthepointofattack.
"Thethingthathehashadsincehe'sbeenhereisgreathands,butwhathehasworkedhardatisreallybecomingagreatblocker.Hehastakenprideinbecomingagreatblocker.Wefeellikewecanmatchhimupwithanydefensiveendintheleagueandhecanhandlethem.That'sbigforus."
BehindLutzenkirchenwillbeapairofsophomoresinBrandonFulseandC.J.Uzomah.JuniorBlakeBurgess,whocompetedforthestartingjobatcenterayearago,hasmadethemovetotightendtogivetheTigersmoredepth.
Fulseplayedasatruefreshmanin2011,appearinginall13gamesandcatchingtwopassesfor12yards.Uzomahalsoplayedasatruefreshmanlastseason,butallbutoneofhisgamerepscameatthewidereceiverposition.
"Fulseneedstodevelopasabetterreceiverthisspring,"saidBoulware."It'snotasnaturalforhimlikeitwasfor'Lutz',butIhopehedevelopsatitandbecomesagreatreceiverforusthisspringbecausewewillneedhim.
"Uzomahplayedwideoutlastyearsothiswillbeanewpositionforhimthisspring.I'mcurioustoseehowhedevelops.Theonlyconcernwithhimisseeinghowhedevelops,especiallyatblockingsincehehasnotworkedwiththetightends,yet."
HavingtheexperienceofLutzenkirchen,thepotentialofFulseandUzomah,aswellasmoredepthwithBurgess,givesBoulwarereasontobeexcitedaboutthepositionin2012.Healsohas2012signeesRickyParksandDarrionHutchersonscheduledtoarriveinthesummer.
"I'mexcitedaboutalloftheguys,"saidBoulware."I'mexcitedabouthaving'Lutz'back,notonlybecausehe'ssuchagreatplayer,butagreatleaderandteacher,too.Itwillbegoodforushavingthoseyoungguysseehimandhisworkethicforanotheryear.
"I'mreallyexcitedabouttheposition,notonlythisyear,butforyearstocome."
AuburnbeginsspringpracticeFridayat8:30a.m.CST.
Auburn'sTEDepthChart
PhilipLutzenkirchen,Senior
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Pmyis
BrandonFulseClickHeretoviewthisLink.,Sophomore
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Pmyis
C.J.Uzomah,Sophomore
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Auburn's2012TESignees
RickyParks,Freshman
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Pmyis
Darrion HutchersonClick Here to view this Link., Freshman
Stargold
Stargold
Stargold
Edit