Friday, August 28, 2009

Freshman to play key positions at Duke

Duke released its depth chart for the start of the 2009 season on Friday and there were few surprises, with senior quarterback Thaddeus Lewis and senior linebacker Vincent Rey locked into starting roles.

Throughout training camp, Duke second-year coach David Cutcliffe has said a lack of depth will require freshmen to contribute this season in key positions. With the release of the depth chart, the Blue Devils have six true freshmen slated among the top reserves, along with five red-shirt freshmen.

Among the newcomers, the Devils have three true freshmen listed as linebackers, a position they recruited for this season because of the expected lack of depth.

Freshmen linebackers Austin Gamble, August Campbell and Tyree Glover have been named to reserve roles.

On offense, freshman wide receiver Connor Varner was named as the first or second receiver behind Austin Kelly, meaning the newcomer could start in the season-opener on Sept. 5 against Richmond.

Freshman wide receiver Tyree Watkins, who was impressive in several scrimmages with his speed and physical play, was named as a backup behind Johnny Williams.

Durham Hillside freshman Desmond Scott was not placed on the two-deep roster.

Junior kickers Nick Maggio and Will Snyderwine were both named as starting kicker, meaning the actual starter will be left to coaches on game day.

-- Edward G. Robinson III