Daniel has Solid Spring

Daniel has Solid Spring

Marshall has had a long history at the defensive end position. The 2014 season should see a Herd defense which runs three to four more very good defensive ends with solid futures out onto the stadium turf. The Herd lost two defensive ends to graduation, Jeremiah Taylor and Alex Bazzie and must find ways to replace them.

Taylor and Bazzie have both either signed free agent contracts or been invited to camp thus far as Taylor is with the Ravens and Bazzie has signed with the Browns. The Herd will have three players returning from last season who saw a lot of important action. Seniors Ra'shawde Myers and Arnold Blackmon return along with sophomore Gary Thompson.

Bazzie and Taylor hope to follow in the footsteps of Johnathan Goddard, Paul Toviessi, B.J. Cohen and Vinny Curry who played professional football. All four also had all conference first team senior seasons as the finished out their careers with the Herd.

A couple months back, Herdhaven.com stated that two players needed to have big springs in order to determine the path of their careers in green and white. Those two players were both on the defensive line, Malcolm Strong, and Armonze Daniel. Strong had a good spring camp, but Daniel took it a step better.

Daniel, in my opinion, was the best player and the most surprising player of spring camp. Daniel has been buried on the depth chart, first at outside linebacker, then at defensive end last season. The 2013 campaign marked the first year Daniel had played defensive end, and it showed. He never was quite able to make the impact expected of him when he was recruited three seasons ago.

Daniel came to Huntington from Avon High School in Indiana. Daniel was the 18th ranked outside linebacker in the country and ranked three stars by scout.com. Daniel arrived on campus as an outside linebacker with what many thought could be the best collection of linebackers recruited in one class in school history. Daniel was joined by Deon Meadows, Cortez Carter and Jermaine Holmes. The other three all played as true freshman.

Daniel, the younger brother of Georgia standout Montez Robinson and older brother of Auburn star Elijah Daniel, is currently 6'4", and 240 pounds.

Ricardo Williams, a transfer from Miami, figured to factor into the defensive end position, but he was moved to the interior late in spring camp and figures to stay there. The Herd also has two incoming recruits who play outside, but neither are expected to be eligible in the upcoming season. Those players are Jason Smith from East Coast Prep, and Malik Thompson from Fork Union. Thompson has a lot of potential.

In the past, Marshall fans have seen several players shine during the spring. One of the most notable was local product Nate Manns, a wide receiver from Beckley, West Virginia. However, Manns never materialized on the field. If Marshall is to achieve the goals it has set forth, they need Daniel to be more like the stars mentioned earlier, and not like that of Manns.

Daniel leads a very experienced defensive line unit for the Herd. As mentioned earlier, the end position is headlined by Myers, Thompson and Blackmon. Daniel should get ample reps if he continues to play as he did in the spring. He ended with the annual Green and White Spring Game in which he recorded three sacks. The interior line Is anchored by sixth year senior James Rouse, as well as juniors Steve Dillon and Jarquez Samuel. Williams, a junior transfer and Josh Brown, a sophomore who originally signed with Clemson also play on the interior.

The development of Armonze Daniel over the spring could prove to be one of the important factors for the 2015 Marshall defense.

Stay tuned to Herdhaven.co for further updates and stories.

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