Prince Tega Wanogho Jr. pushing for starting role on Auburn offensive line

Prince Tega Wanogho Jr. pushing for starting role on Auburn offensive line

In his first two years on the Plains, Prince Tega Wanogho Jr. has been defined by his raw athleticism.

As the offensive lineman prepares for his redshirt-sophomore season, the question now is whether the 6-footo-8, 300-pound Wanogho will use his brute physical skills as a starter this fall.

“Time will tell on that whether when he’s ready and all that,” offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey said, “but he’s definitely in the mix and getting a lot of reps. I like the progress he’s making.”

Through the first five spring practices, Wanogho has been working primarily as the second-team left tackle behind returning starter Darius James.

Offensive line coach Herb Hand has kept James exclusively at tackle, but should contingencies be explored, as they tend to be during the spring, one possibility is James moving at left guard with Wanogho at tackle.

“Now that he’s honed in on one position, he’s on the same ride that I am, and he’s just getting better every day and he’s pushing me to get better every day,” James said. “He’s agile. He can move around. He’s really athletic, which reminds me of myself. He’s strong. When he gets a hold of you, you’re probably not getting off the block.”

Prince Tega Wanogho Jr. ‘really close to putting it all together’

A year ago, teammates referred to Wanogho “strong as an ox” and said he “runs like a gazelle.”

Lack of experience is still a factor and as valuable as the remaining 10 spring practices will be, there is still much Wanogho has to learn that can’t be taught outside of games.

“He needs to improve on the mental aspect of the game,” former left guard Alex Kozan said. “He has more tools than most of our starters in what he can do out there. He has to improve on his mental side of the game because growing up I don’t think he played offensive line until this past year. Some of us have been playing offensive line for 12-13 years; instincts take over.

“For him, he isn’t quite there yet. Hopefully he can continue to improve on that and I think he’ll be a good player.”

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Published at Thu, 16 Mar 2017 18:35:00 +0000