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Northwestern football final spring depth chart projections

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Here's our final update before fall camp.

With Northwestern's spring practices in the books, it's time for one final crack at a projected depth chart before summer workouts and fall camp. Prior to spring ball, we took our first guess at how the Wildcats would line up, and we actually weren't all that off base. Last week, we amended those projections after getting a clearer look at what the depth chart might look like during open practice.

After this past Saturday's "spring game," we've made a few more changes. Unless we hear otherwise, here's how we believe Northwestern's depth chart looks heading into fall camp:

Changes/Notes

- Matt Alviti said following practice that Miles Shuler, who has been injured for the better part of the spring, is now being used as an outside receiver. Solomon Vault appears to be the primary slot guy.

- On the offensive line, Eric Olson appeared to be getting the majority of the first team reps at right tackle Saturday, so we've moved him ahead of Blake Hance, with whom Olson split reps the previous Saturday.

- In general, the offensive line is by no means set in stone. For example, Geoff Mogus is a certain starter, but even he is unsure of whether he'll play guard or tackle. "We're just trying to get the best five guys out there," Mogus said Saturday.

- With Mogus' move from guard to tackle in mind, our assumption is that Shane Mertz's move to guard is merely a placeholder until Matt Frazier returns from injury.

- A few roster notes: According to the program, SB/DE Jack Schwaba is no longer with the team, and RB Xavier Menifield is no longer with the team and not currently in school at Northwestern.

Depth Chart

Players in italics were mentioned by Pat Fitzgerald as probable starters, though not necessarily at the positions at which we have them listed.

Position Starter Backup
Quarterback Clayton Thorson (RS Fr) Matt Alviti (So)/Zack Oliver (Sr)
Running Back Justin Jackson (So) Auston Anderson (RS Fr)/Warren Long (Jr)/Solomon Vault (So)
H-Receiver Solomon Vault (So) Stephen Buckley (Jr)
Y-Receiver Christian Jones (Sr) Mike McHugh (Jr)/Austin Carr (Jr)
Z-Receiver Cameron Dickerson (Sr) Pierre Youngblood-Ary (Sr)
X-Receiver Miles Shuler (Sr) Andrew Scanlan (Jr)
Superback Dan Vitale (Sr) Garrett Dickerson (So)/Jayme Taylor (So)
Left Tackle Geoff Mogus (Sr) Tommy Doles (RS Fr)
Left Guard Adam DePietro (Jr) Connor Mahoney (Jr)
Center Brad North (So) Ian Park (Jr)
Right Guard Matt Frazier (Sr) Shane Mertz (Sr)
Right Tackle Eric Olson (Jr) Blake Hance (RS Fr)
Defensive End Dean Lowry (Sr) Xavier Washington (So)
Defensive Tackle CJ Robbins (Sr) Max Chapman (Sr)
Defensive Tackle Greg Kuhar (Jr) Sean McEvilly (Sr)
Defensive End Deonte Gibson (Sr) Ifeadi Odenigbo (Jr)
SAM Linebacker Drew Smith (Sr) Jaylen Prater (Jr)
MIKE Linebacker Anthony Walker (So) Brett Walsh (So)
WILL Linebacker Joseph Jones (Jr) Nate Hall (RS Fr)
Cornerback Nick VanHoose (Sr) Parrker Westphal (RS Fr)/Keith Watkins (So)
Safety Traveon Henry (Sr) Kyle Queiro (So)
Safety Godwin Igwebuike (So) Terrance Brown (Jr)
Cornerback Matthew Harris (Jr) Marcus McShepard (So)
Kicker Jack Mitchell (Sr) Hunter Niswander (RS Fr)
Punter Hunter Niswander (RS Fr) ??
Kick Return Miles Shuler (Sr) Solomon Vault (So)
Punt Return Miles Shuler (Sr) Solomon Vault (So)