Tyler Orlosky can add another notch to his preseason hype list. On Wednesday, Orlosky was named a third-team Preseason All-American.
This honor, bestowed to Orlosky by Athlon Sports comes after he was named to the Rimington Trophy Watch List last month.
Athlon also named Orlosky a Preseason All-Big 12 honoree. It’s no secret that Orlosky is the glue that holds the WVU offensive line, and the Mountaineers offensive unit as a whole, together in games, camps and practices.
He’s been around long enough to take on a leadership role and he leads by example. Orlosky is well-spoken and down-to-earth and is able to get focused and ready whenever he takes the field.
Really, his first honor of this offseason came at the team’s annual spring game when Orlosky took home an Iron Mountaineer award.
This season, the Mountaineers will rely on Orlosky and the offensive line more than usual because it will be one of the most-veteran led units on the field.
The OL has experience and it has depth. Last year, WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen and offensive line coach Ron Crook used different players in different spots across the line to accommodate after some injuries and underperforming players had to sit the bench.
That shuffling from a season ago will pay off in 2016, according to Orlosky, himself.
"“I think combined we have 90 starts among the five or six guys who are going to be competing for a job. We’re all used to how we play next to each other, and I think that will help us down the road this season,” Orlosky told Scout.com."
Adam Pankey and Tony Matteo join Orlosky as two other fifth-year seniors on the offensive line. Marcell Lazard and Kyle Bosch are juniors who made an impact last season with extended playing time.
The cohesion and chemistry among the offensive line might just be the most important and underrated aspect of running a fluid offense. With Orlosky in charge, the communication surely won’t be a problem as Skylar Howard and Rushell Shell prepare to take the reigns of this offense.
According to WVUsports.com, the West Virginia offense averaged 479.7 yards per game of total offense, 34.0 points, 228.2 rushing yards and 251.5 passing yards. The offense ranked No. 17 nationally in rushing offense, No. 18 in first down offense and No. 23 in total offense.
All of that is thanks in part to Orlosky seeing action on more than 100 plays.