Big news today! Hammer & Rails is now on Facebook. Just find the little button on the left, or search Hammer and Rails at Facebook to join.
Our next player is one that has been consistently on the offensive line depth chart throughout his career, but has yet to make a contribution on the field. He enters his final season in West Lafayette with a chance to nail down one of the three open starting spots along the offensive line, but it will take some work.
Ryan Prater - Sr. (5)
Hometown: Dallas, TX (Trinity Christian Academy)
6'5, 286 pounds
2010 Projection: Possible starter at right tackle
Prater was another player without a lot of background info.
Prater has been one of those guys that has constantly occupied a number two spot on the depth chart. His bio states that the Mechanical Engineering major has yet to play for the Boilers, but I could swear he has appeared as a backup at least once. He was a second team all-state performer in high school despite playing just one year after backing up a pair of Division I prospects. Prater himself was a 2-star recruit in the 2006 class.
He is not to be confused with the wrestler from Illinois, who is apparently a wrestling god that rolls on the west-side with Tupac despite being whiter than I am. Purdue's Ryan Prater was a wrestler in high school, but unless he makes a commute between Purdue and Champaign daily he limits his second sport activities. With an open spot at right tackle there is hope that Prater can slide into that spot this season. Yesterday's feature player in Trevor Foy is competing with him for that spot.
Neither player will have much experience on the field at the position, but Prater has patiently waited for his moment. That could finally come in 2010 if he can prove himself in fall ball and finally reach the top of the depth chart. As a mechanical engineering major he is clearly not afraid to go to class, either.
Boilermakings Notes after the Jump:
Rivals.com College Basketball - Breakout backcourt players for 2010-11
Kelsey Barlow is listed as a breakout player nationally. Hopefully he is breaking out a better free throw percentage.
THE BIG BOARD GETS A LONG DELAYED UPDATE (SPONSORED BY CROWN ROYAL) - Every Day Should Be Saturday
I can't believe I missed this, but we're still getting solid Big Ten representation. This would be Minnesota football's first title in decades.
My proposal for Big Ten divisions - Big Ten Blog - ESPN
I really like Rittenberg's proposal here. It keeps us out of "The Big Three" quandry. I feel like we can be on the level with Iowa, and Nebraska isn't as big and scary as they used to be. Wisconsin is a more difficult matchup with us right now.
Stoner commits to IU | IndyStar.com | The Indianapolis Star
I couldn't help but giggle at this headline after all the problems the school had with drug use under Sampson.