HS football position by position breakdown: Scouting the offensive linemen
When Pine-Richland won WPIAL and PIAA Class 6A titles last season, the star quarterback headed to Notre Dame, and a 1,000-yard running back and a talented group of wide receivers earned their share of the well-deserved praise.
But the line surely had a lot to do with the offensive success, too.
The Rams had three linemen earn first-team all-conference accolades a year ago, and the trio returns to anchor the title defense: tackle Andrew Kristofic, guard Mike Katic and center Mike Dorundo.
Offensive line remains a position of depth around the WPIAL. A handful of linemen already are committed to Division I schools including Kristofic, Katic, South Fayette guard Tom Elia (Richmond) and Elizabeth Forward tackle A.J Ackerman.
1. Andrew Kristofic
Pine-Richland, sr., 6-6, 260
Kristofic’s play at tackle helped keep quarterback Phil Jurkovec upright last season as the Rams won WPIAL and PIAA Class 6A titles. He held more than two dozen offers, including Clemson, Florida, Georgia, Michigan State and Ohio State, when he picked Notre Dame.
2. Mike Katic
Pine-Richland, sr., 6-3, 270
Yes, two of the WPIAL’s linemen work side by side on Friday nights. Katic is an anchor at guard, and cleared the way for two 1,000-yard rushers last season. He received more than two dozen offers before committing to Indiana.
3. Trent Holler
Latrobe, sr., 6-3, 290
Holler is an aggressive center who’s able to drive middle linebackers off the ball. He lists more than a dozen college offers with Pitt and West Virginia among them. His other FBS options are Ball State, Connecticut, East Carolina and Ohio.
4. Michael Carmody
Mars, jr., 6-6, 280
Carmody played tight end last season but will shift to tackle this fall, a position he’ll likely play in college. The four-star recruit holds more than a dozen offers including Pitt, Penn State, West Virginia, Michigan and Wisconsin.
5. A.J. Ackerman
Eliz. Forward, sr., 6-6, 290
Ackerman already is a two-time all-conference selection in Class 3A. The tackle committed in June to Towson, a Division I FCS school in the Colonial Athletic Association.
One to watch
North Allegheny, jr., 6-4, 275
Lugg will become a first-year starter this season, but the offensive tackle already lists a scholarship offer from Nebraska. His older brother Josh is a sophomore lineman at Notre Dame. NA has a pair of oversized tackles with senior Elijah Boyd (6-4, 260) on the opposite side.