Center Kody Koebensky is in for a fight in the trenches when ASU heads to Dallas to take on Notre Dame.
At 6-foot-3, 290 pounds, Koebensky isn’t the biggest offensive lineman by any stretch, but he routinely has to block defensive tackles that are much larger.
Saturday in Dallas, Koebensky will have his biggest test of the year against Notre Dame’s gargantuan All-American nose guard Louis Nix III. At just over 6-foot-2 and 345 pounds, Nix will be the largest defensive lineman Koebensky has had to block all year.
As big of a challenge as Nix presents, Koebensky said he sees it as an opportunity to prove himself.
“We’re going to be on a national stage, and if I can play well against him, I think I can play well against anyone in the country,” Koebensky said. “He’s one of the best out there. He’s a great player. … For how large he is, he’s got some pretty quick moves, and he’s a real fast-twitch guy for being 360 pounds. So he’s a real weapon.”
Koebensky said ASU has dealt with defenses similar to Notre Dame this season, which will help him against Nix III.
“We got some great looks from some great teams earlier in the season,” Koebensky said. “Wisconsin and Stanford, those are very good programs that play kind of the same defense as Notre Dame. So, seeing it again is definitely a help with those two games.”
Along with Nix, the Fighting Irish have other dangerous pass rushers including junior defensive end Stephon Tuitt and junior outside linebacker Ishaq Williams. Identifying where players like Nix, Tuitt and Williams are before the ball is snapped will be critical to ASU’s success.
“They like to bring rushers from different areas, so identifying where those guys are and putting ourselves on them is a huge part of the game,” Koebensky said.
- Coach Todd Graham said that redshirt sophomore defensive tackle Mo Latu and sophomore defensive tackle Jaxon Hood are both doubtful for Saturday’s game.
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