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Fall practice important for JMU offensive and defensive line units

Published: Oct. 20, 2020 at 7:58 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Fall practice is in full swing for the James Madison University football team.

The Dukes are practicing in the fall in preparation for a spring season in 2021. The fall workouts provide an important opportunity for JMU’s units up front to develop chemistry.

The offensive line is headlined by All-American senior tackle Liam Fornadel. Overall, four players with starting experience return with Fornadel, tackles Raymond Gillespie and Zaire Bethea, and guard Truvell Wilson. But the Dukes lose a pair of key players from last year’s unit. Center Mac Patrick and guard Jahee Jackson have moved on due to graduation. Redshirt senior J.T. Timming, redshirt sophomore Nick Kidwell, and redshirt junior Jake Glavin are among the players who could see increased playing time for the Dukes.

“I think the guys that we have got are going to do a great job of filling in and really just do their job," said Fornadel. "Go out there and compete. I think they have been doing pretty well so far.”

As for the defensive line, the unit has a completely new look. Senior Mike Greene is lone the player back from last year’s starting unit that included program greats Ron’Dell Carter and John Daka along with standout Adeeb Atariwa. Carter and Daka have moved on to professional football while Atariwa transferred to UVA. Greene is a now the leader for the unit that will have some new, but talented players starting.

“We have had a lot of people step up," said Greene. "A lot of young guys, a lot of guys that’s been here for a long time but just waiting for their spot to open up.”

Redshirt junior defensive lineman Isaac Ukwu is back after missing all of last season with an injury and should play a big role for the Dukes up front. Former Temple transfer Antonio Colclough, sophomore Jalen Green, and Minnesota transfer Abi N-Okonji are among the players who could see playing time along the defensive line for JMU in the spring of 2021.

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