- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
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Bo Bolinger, Guard, Oklahoma: Although I haven't had the opportunity to see Bo in action yet this year except through the game films, I have talked to many opposing coaches, and they all claim that he lives up to his advance billing. Gomer Jones, one of the game's greatest line coaches and a tremendous center himself in his playing days at Ohio State, has this to say about Bolinger: "He's very quick and durable, has never-been hurt; he is tireless, has good agility, reacts well and is a strong blocker. He's also one of our fastest men down under punts. He plays very well against traps, is a good pursuer, a sure tackier and a real leader."
Bruce Bosley, Tackle, West Virginia: Coach Art Lewis of the Mountaineers told me: "No coach ever had two better ones." He was referring to Tackles Bruce Bosley and Sam Huff. And of the two, Bosley is the better. Regardless of "program weight" he hits the scales at around 245 pounds. Much sought by the pros, he is almost certain to be a No. 1 draft choice. For three years his play has been brilliant, both offensively and defensively.
Jim Brown, Guard, UCLA: I have Watched Jim for two seasons, studied game pictures and attended practice sessions where he was engaged solely in fundamental drills, and I second Coach Red Sanders' statement: " Brown is probably the best all-round guard ever to play for UCLA. He has never played a bad game." Brown, a 200-pounder, is high-spirited, smart, durable and above all has what I like to term "second reaction"—the ability to absorb the initial shock of a block and still make the tackle.
Steve DeLa Torre, Center. Florida: Although not large as centers go (5 feet 11 inches and 190 pounds), Steve has been praised by all opponents and coaches. Primarily a defensive specialist until a year ago, Steve has developed into a competent blocker. I've watched him for two years and during preseason practice, and he well merits all the praise heaped upon him.
Dick Hill, Guard, Michigan: Completely lost behind the reams of publicity on the great Ron Kramer is 190-pound junior Guard Dick Hill. He's great offensively, a fine trapper and pulls out well to lead plays. He has been one of the spearheads of the Wolverines' versatile attack. He is practically always the first man down under punts. Defensively, he is sharp and has excellent body control.
John Hopkins, Tackle, Navy: Captain Hopkins shifted from end to tackle in his sophomore year by his own request because he was "needed most" at this position. In his senior season he is a real leader on and off the field. He came fast last year, endowed with an abundance of speed and weighing around 210 pounds. But his development this season has been truly remarkable. Defensively, he has a fine change of pace—one play a "floater," the next a "slasher." His excellent offensive play is keynoted by the quality that sparks everything he does: aggressiveness.
Steve Myhra, Guard-Tackle, North Dakota: Myhra, a 225-pound transfer from Minnesota, must be regarded as one of the fine linemen of the year. He turned out this year to play tackle, but because of his tremendous speed—Coach Frank Zazula says he has timed him in 10.5 and 10.6 in full football uniform for the hundred—he was moved to an offensive guard. There he could pull out and lead the attack, still playing left tackle on defense to meet the brunt of opposing offenses. Zazula is particularly impressed with his initial charge and his ability to hit and recover and move quickly to whatever area appears crucial to the play.
Jim Parker, Guard, Ohio State: Last year as a sophomore Jim was slowed down by injuries, but this year the young giant—6 feet 3 inches and 250 pounds—has really been going to town. He's a tremendous linebacker, meeting the running plays with devastating tackles, and he seems to "smell" a forward pass. Despite his bulk Parker is probably the fastest lineman on the Ohio State squad—last week he picked a Northwestern fumble out of the air and ran it 40 yards for a touchdown.
Bob Pellegrini, Center, Maryland (see cover): Bob bulwarks what may well be the best line in college football. Even before Coach Jim Tatum switched him from guard to center this year, he had acquired a national reputation as a linebacker. I've had the opportunity to study him closely and he does everything well. Packing 225 pounds on a 6-foot 3-inch frame, he will be a prime favorite for the pro draft. A clever diagnostician of enemy plays and a superb defensive quarterback, he has taken to the offensive phase of the center position as a duck takes to water.
Hugh Pitts, center, TCU: Hugh was a unanimous selection last year as the All-Southwest Conference center on a losing team. Hampered by a leg injury early in the season, he came into his own against Miami a fortnight ago when he was tops defensively, and his blocking led to the winning touchdown. Pitts is a smart defensive quarterback with the size and speed to back up the line as it should be done.