Thoughts on IU's spring depth chart

In preparation for the start of spring practice Tuesday, Indiana has issued an updated depth chart (Page 4).

There aren't many surprises on offense, as eight starters return from 2009. Junior Andrew McDonald appears as the starting left tackle, as Indiana must replace standout Rodger Saffold. Veteran Cody Faulkner is listed as the starting right guard ahead of freshman Aaron Price.

The defensive depth chart reveals a few more clues:

  • Junior Darius Johnson and fifth-year senior Deonte Mack are listed as the first-team defensive ends. Several others will be in the mix, including Fred Jones, Eric Thomas and Terrance Thomas, who will miss spring ball with a shoulder injury. Mack boasts a good deal of experience at both line positions.

  • Senior Tyler Replogle shifts to middle linebacker as IU must replace Matt Mayberry. Junior college transfer Jeff Thomas is listed as the backup there.

  • Junior Leon Beckum and sophomore Chad Sherer are listed as the starters at the outside linebacker spots. Replogle started nine games at strongside linebacker in 2009.

  • Adrian Burks and Matt Ernest will compete for a starting cornerback spot opposite Donnell Jones. Ernest will be limited this spring as he's pitching for Indiana's baseball team.

  • Junior Chris Adkins is listed as the starter at free safety, while converted wide receiver Mitchell Evans is the starting strong safety ahead of Jerimy Finch. Evans will miss spring ball following hip surgery, so it will be interesting to see if Finch, a heralded transfer from Florida, can finally answer the bell.

  • All-Big Ten wideout Tandon Doss will get a shot to fill Ray Fisher's spots on returns. Doss is listed as the starter for both punt and kickoff returns.

  • Head coach Bill Lynch said today that Edward Wright-Baker and Dusty Kiel will compete for time as the team's Wildcat quarterback, a role Evans filled well in 2009.