Taylor Gadbois said he and Danny Isidora have been envisioning themselves anchoring the right side of the University of Miami offensive line since last year, “when Danny was in his [walking] boot and I was in camp” stuck behind Seantrel Henderson.
“Was it frustrating? Hell yeah,” said Gadbois, a 6-8, 316-pound redshirt sophomore from Dallas, Ga., who said he played roughly 100 to 150 snaps last season and saw action in four games.
“I didn’t want to be behind Seantrel and [Brandon] Linder. Did I think I was better than them? All day,” Gadbois said. “But they were seniors, damn good players. You have to wait your time, bite your tongue and work. Now it’s my time.”
The Hurricanes, only six practices into their spring regiment, aren’t ready to officially dub anyone as the replacements for two former linemen expected to be taken during May’s NFL Draft. But so far, the two redshirt sophomores who pictured themselves filling those spots are running with the first team this spring and looking pretty good, according to coach Al Golden.
Isidora, from nearby Weston Cypress Bay High, was all set to compete for playing time in the rotation at guard last season. But the day before fall camp began, Isidora (6-4, 316) broke the fifth metatarsal bone in his left foot while jogging on the team’s practice field.
“It was a freak accident,” Isidora said.
The Hurricanes are getting close to the point in camp when linemen are going to start moving around to other spots to help build depth, assistant Art Kehoe said.
Aside from Henderson and Linder, UM lost two other offensive linemen who were part of its 2013 rotation: Jared Wheeler (graduation) and Malcolm Bunche (transferred to UCLA). Left tackle Ereck Flowers and left guard Jonathan Feliciano are pretty much cemented in their starting roles. So is center Shane McDermott once he returns from injury.
Blue chip freshman Kc McDermott, receiving second-team snaps at left tackle, will soon start to get snaps at right guard, Kehoe said.
Kehoe said Kc McDermott could play guard or tackle on either side, and he thinks Flowers and Gadbois can play either side at tackle. Isidora, who arrived at UM weighing 345 pounds but dropped 40 pounds in one year, can play any position, Kehoe said.
Gadbois said he and Isidora — who go fishing together in the Keys with former UM recruit Josh Witt — are working on their on-field chemistry as blockers this spring.