[Vandal] Veteran Will Switch Positions Again

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Fri Oct 1 11:38:10 PDT 2021

>From The Lewiston TribuneLewiston, IdahoThursday, September 30, 2021
Veteran Will Switch Positions Again
Floyd has played all around the offensive line
By Stephan Wiebe
MOSCOW — When coaches or players think of Idaho veteran offensive lineman Logan Floyd, the first word that comes to mind is “versatility.”
The Vandal football team has leaned heavily on Floyd’s adaptability since the junior started all 11 games as a true freshman during an All-American season in 2018.
So it’s no surprise Floyd is expected to move around again this weekend. Center Chad Bagwell is set to return for UI, moving Floyd from center back to strong tackle, where he’s spent the most time.
Bagwell missed Idaho’s first three games with an undisclosed injury.
“We got Chad back this week, so he’ll be the starting center so I’ll move back to tackle which is nice,” Floyd said. “But I trust him in there, he’s going to do a great job and he’s a big guy, so it’s going to be good for us.”
Floyd mostly has played at strong tackle in his career, but played some backup center in the spring season and all three games at the position this season.
Floyd’s versatility has been handy for a Idaho offensive line that started fall camp a bit short-handed without Bagwell and projected starter Nate Azzopardi because of injuries. Starter Abe Christensen also missed some time.
“That’s a player that’s played all positions and he’s been asked to play multiple positions since I’ve been here,” first-year Idaho offensive line coach Nick Gilbert said of Floyd. “He has taken that responsibility on and he has crushed it.”
Floyd (6-foot-4, 298 pounds) has started all but two games for Idaho in the past three seasons. The Kearns, Utah, native was an honorable mention All-Big Sky pick in the spring at tackle.
He was thrown into the fire as a freshman, playing 98.9 percent of the team’s offensive snaps, and never looked back.
“It was a pretty crazy experience and not a lot of people get that experience coming in and starting as a true freshman, so being able to do that, it was a blessing,” Floyd said. “I took advantage of it — I was given that position and never gave it up.”
Floyd said it helped to have a mentor who’d been through the same thing. At the time, the Vandal trenches were led by senior strong guard Noah Johnson — another four-year starter.
“I trusted him because I knew what he was doing and he was just a dog,” Floyd said, “so playing with him, it was a great experience.”
Gilbert said Floyd has grown into not only a leader of the offensive line, but of the whole team. Part of that maturity is realizing when he makes a mistake.
“There’s times where he will take the blame for things and knows when he did make a mistake,” Gilbert said. “And I think that’s one of the biggest things you see with him being mature and becoming a veteran player.”
Floyd and the Vandal big men racked up valuable experience against Big Ten and Pac-12 defensive linemen during UI’s latest games against Indiana and Oregon State, respectively.
The 1-2 Vandals will try to channel that in their Big Sky Conference opener at 7 p.m. Saturday at 4-0 UC Davis (ESPN+).
The Vandals at times were able to move the ball against their Football Bowl Subdivision foes, particularly against the Hoosiers — something Floyd said was a confidence booster for the O-line group going into conference play.
“There were a few drives where we just beat ourselves against Indiana,” Floyd said, “but we didn’t have any false starts, we were able to move the ball on them … so I feel that builds a lot of confidence with our offensive line.”
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