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2023 TCU Football Preview: Offensive Line

The offensive line loses some key starters, but Sonny Dykes is excited about the group heading into fall camp.

TCU Athletics

Welcome to the preview for the greatest position group in sports - the offensive line. If you haven’t already, I recommend checking out my interview with TCU left tackle Brandon Coleman after you get done here! The 2022 TCU offensive line was among the best the program has seen in years. The Frogs lost some key players from last season, but there is plenty of talent left on the roster. At Big 12 media days head coach Sonny Dykes praised the offensive line and said he thinks they will be a strength of the team again in 2023.

Key Losses

Left guard and team captain Steve Avila (pictured below) was a 2nd round draft pick by the LA Rams. In 2022, Avila did not allow a single sack, and he only gave up 24 quarterback pressures according to Pro Football Focus (all stats in this article are from PFF). He was a key member of the unit last year, and his presence will definitely be missed.

TCU v West Virginia Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images

Center Alan Ali came to the Horned Frogs as a grad transfer from SMU last year and cemented himself as the starting center in 2022. He also departed for the NFL and was picked up as an undrafted free agent by the Minnesota Vikings. Replacing him will probably be the toughest job for OL coach A.J. Ricker. Finally, TCU lost right guard Wes Harris who played over 600 snaps last year.

Projected Starters

Left Tackle: #77 Brandon Coleman (Senior). Coleman became one of the top offensive linemen in the Big 12 after his move to left tackle last season. The Denton high school grad came to TCU from Trinity Valley Community College as a left guard but moved due to needs on the line. He finished last season with just 3 sacks allowed on 1,007 snaps. Given that Coleman is generally matched up against the best opposition pass rusher I’d say that’s about as good as it gets from a left tackle. Coleman was voted Honorable-Mention All-Big 12 last season, and he begins this year as a preseason All-Big 12 player in almost every preview magazine. I expect Coleman to have another solid season and be an early-round pick in the 2024 NFL draft.

Left Guard: #76 Garrett Hayes (Redshirt Junior). Hayes only played 30 snaps at left guard last season, but he did play quite a bit on special teams. He started at left guard during the spring game, so I presume he is the starter right now, but of the 5 spots on the line I feel least confident about this one. I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw a different starter in week one.

Center: #53 John Lanz (Redshirt Senior). Lanz has had really bad luck with injury throughout his career, but he could finally be ready to go heading into 2023. He started at center in the spring game, and I think he’ll keep the position heading into the season. Lanz missed his first two seasons completely with injury, but he did start in the final seven games of his redshirt sophomore season. In 2021, he saw action in 8 games, and last year he appeared in 14 of the 15 games. He’s also pretty strong, see below.

Right Guard: #73 Willis Patrick (Redshirt Senior). Patrick got the start at right guard in the spring game. The grad transfer comes to TCU from Jackson State where he played one season and started all 11 games. Prior to his time in Jackson, Patrick was a Division II All-American at Angelo State. I think Patrick has a chance to be a great player for this TCU offense in 2023.

Right Tackle: #74 Andrew Coker (Redshirt Junior). In 2020, Coker started 8 games at right tackle as a redshirt freshman. He hasn’t looked back since. Coker started all 12 games in 2021 for the Horned Frogs and continued that run by starting all 15 games in 2022. Coker was also an Honorable-Mention All-Big 12 pick in 2022, and he’s looking to have another great season this year. I won’t be surprised if Coker declares for the draft after this season, and he’ll probably go in the first four rounds if he does.

Playing Time Contenders

#68 Michael Nichols (Redshirt Junior) - Nichols played in 5 games before suffering a season-ending injury. Brandon Coleman told me in our interview that Nichols has had a great spring and he expects him to find the field this fall. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him move inside to play guard and compete there.

#51 Coltin Deery (Sophomore) - Deery is a transfer from Maryland. Last season he played 224 snaps for the Terps, mostly at center. He allowed just 1 sack in his time on the field. I could see a world where Deery gets in at center and Lanz is moved to guard.

#71 Marcus Williams (Redshirt Junior) - Williams saw the field in 13 of 15 games in 2022. He played offensively as a left tackle and saw action on special teams. At 6-7, 331 pounds he has the size to play, and if things get shuffled around he could find the field more this year.

#79 Tommy Brockermeyer (Redshirt Sophomore) - Brockermeyer is one of three Alabama transfers for the TCU offense in 2023. The Fort Worth native was a 5-star offensive tackle as a recruit and was the #2 offensive tackle in the 2021 class. Brockermeyer struggled to find the field at Alabama and hasn’t garnered much attention yet at TCU. However, I wouldn't be surprised if he works his way into the mix this year.

On The Roster

Below are the rest of the offensive linemen on the TCU roster. All recruit ratings are from

#50 Brione Ramsey-Brooks (Freshman) 3-star interior OL out of South Oak Cliff HS.

#52 Ezra Dotson-Oyetade (Redshirt Sophomore) 4-star interior OL, rated the #15 IOL in the class of 2021. Came to TCU from Arizona State last season.

#54 Quinton Harris (Redshirt Freshman) 3-star OT out of Arlington Seguin HS.

#55 Robby Rochester (Redshirt Junior) 3-star OT out of Southlake Carroll HS. Came to TCU last year from UConn.

#56 Ben Taylor-Whitfield (Freshman) 3-star OT out of Duncanville HS. Rated the #54 tackle in the nation.

#61 Riley Self (Redshirt Sophomore) out of Lufkin HS.

#64 Jackson McNeff (Freshman) out of Prestonwood Christian Academy.

#65 Mike Stoker (Freshman) 3-star interior OL out of South Oak Cliff HS.

#67 Hudson White (Redshirt Sophomore) out of Wylie HS (Abilene).

#69 Gannon Gaubert (Redshirt Freshman) out of Highland Park HS.

#72 Jasper Lott (Redshirt Sophomore) out of Argyle HS. Lott was originally recruited as a tight end and was a 3-star recruit in the 2021 class.

#78 Cooper Powers (Freshman) 3-star interior OL out of De Le Salle HS (CA).