Gamecock FB: Cody Waldrop begins his journey
When trying to replace a senior starter on the offensive line, it can be challenging.
When trying to replace a four-year starter who has started more games than anyone in school history, you can bet it'll be tough to live up to those expectations.
Cody Waldrop appears ready to do that.
The redshirt freshman from Seffner, Florida came into the fall practice as the number one option to replace former starting center T.J. Johnson. Last night after the fifth practice of fall camp, Shawn Elliott spoke on Waldrop and his efforts so far in replacing Johnson.
"You better be confident in somebody who is replacing a fifth-year senior," said Elliott. "He works hard. I am confident in him. He's going to screw up, then we're going to deal with it. But I am confident in him. He's dependable. He's never late for anything. He works hard, he's intelligent."
Strong words for Waldrop from his position coach.
Waldrop himself was asked about replacing Johnson after practice and well and realizes the big challenge he has in front of him.
"Obliviously I've got huge shoes to fill," said Waldrop. "I'm gonna do the best I can and I believe we'll be ready to go August 29th."
He's got some help on the offensive line with some veteran players who have been where Waldrop is at this point and learned and grown together. The experience those guys have certainly will help Waldrop out this season as he mentioned on Tuesday.
"It helps a lot man. If I don't know the play you can reach over to either side and they know it like the back of their hands."
Elliott seemed pleased overall last night with his group's efforts so far.
"We've got a good first five right now," Elliott said Tuesday. "The backups are doing well - working hard and trying to get better. I'm pretty pleased with the intensity."
This offensive line has seemingly been a thorn in Steve Spurrier's offense but has progressively gotten better over the years thanks to higher quality talent and better coaching. This year, they are expected to be even better and have the look that they can be a force to be reckoned with.
A big part of that will be Cody Waldrop's emergence as the center.
A tough task for a redshirt freshman but the last guy to take over that role was a redshirt freshman at the time and look how that turned out.