116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY -- Iowa's left guard position has been a revolving door this season. Next season, you'll probably see Matt Tobin and Brandon Scherff as fixtures on Iowa's offensive line.
Tackle Markus Zusevics and guard Adam Gettis will graduate. Left tackle Riley Reiff has been touted by NFL mock draft internet sites since the end of last season. He'll turn 23 next week, so if he returns for his fifth year, he'd be 24-years-old going into the 2013 NFL draft.
He could have a decision to make at the end of the season. So, getting Tobin and Scherff snaps right now might pay off next fall.
"Matt has the experience edge over Brandon right now," coach Kirk Ferentz said.
Looking ahead, Tobin, a 6-foot-6, 290-pound junior, could end up right back where he started 2011, starting at left guard. He'll see competition (Drew Clark, Conor Boffeli and, if injuries subside, perhaps Nolan MacMillan), but the Dyersville native has started most of this season.
"Matt is a guy who's really earned the right to play," Ferentz said. "I tell people, he's not the prettiest car on the lot, but it's like that car you drove in college, he's going to get you there and you can count on it. There's a lot of value in that, I think.
"He's a tough, hard-minded guy. Right now he's got the edge just because of that experience level and a little bit more age."
Scherff (6-5, 310) has eyed Reiff's left tackle spot. Reiff has said he plans to stay, but it that changes, Scherff, Brett Van Sloten and Andrew Donnal will contend.
"We're really high on Brandon," Ferentz said. "I think he's going to be a good player here. He's done a lot of good things, but he's moving up on that progression right now. He needs more time."
Ferentz mentioned that Scherff missed a lot of time in camp this fall and that hindered his development.
"If you miss a lot of time in camp, for a lineman, that's a critical building phase, if you will," Ferentz said. "I think he's still playing a little bit of catch-up, and he's going to be a good player."
One of those names also could slide out to replace Zusevics. Austin Blythe, Jordan Walsh and Dan Heiar might be in the mix for Gettis' spot.