The first week of Air Force Falcons football training camp is over and there is a buzz as the team prepares for its September 5th opener against Morgan State. As with every other camp, names start to pop up as those players that are standing out and hopes spring eternal that those players will step up and be the next stars of the upcoming season. For the Falcons, there are three names that are garnering that buzz.
Nose Guard David Harris
Size is something that the Falcons have really focused on for the past couple of seasons, as the Falcons try to eliminate some of the mismatches in size on the offensive and defensive lines. Word out of camp is that nose guard David Harris is up to around 285 lbs., which is extremely important for the Falcons to hold the line of scrimmage, especially square in the middle of the field with their beefed up nose guard. The Falcons turned their 2014 season into an extremely successful campaign by focusing on stopping the run, and the size Harris has added will be important for Defensive Coordinator Steve Russ to try and keep teams from running on Air Force in 2015.
Running Back Benton Washington
Troy Calhoun during his tenure as head coach has tried to keep the injury situation of his team as quiet as possible. Last year's starting tailback Jacobi Owens is recovering from a foot injury that kept him out of the last three games of the 2014 season. Owens is believed to be recovered, but that is not stopping Benton Washington from impressing the coaches early in the 2015 camp. There is a good chance that Washington could steal some carries from Owens, and push senior tailback Devin Rushing down the depth chart.
Wide Receiver Tyler Williams
The Falcons will always be a run first team, but there are signs that the Falcons could attack teams through the air more than usual in 2015. It starts with returning wide receivers Jalen Robinette and Garrett Brown, as well as tight end Garrett Griffin. Those three play-makers are dangerous in the open field, and with Air Force starting Nate Romine at quarterback, they have a better passer than usual. Now, with sophomore wide receiver Tyler Williams getting buzz for his catching and play-making ability, Air Force has the unique opportunity under returning offensive coordinator Mike Thiessen to be much more balanced in its offense, which could spell trouble for defenses that face the Falcons in 2015.