Versatile Koehne helps O-line


Florida offensive lineman Kyle Koehne (64) blocks for QB Jeff Driskel, left.

Brad McClenny/Staff photographer
Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 at 8:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, September 9, 2013 at 11:42 p.m.

Kyle Koehne may not be a full-time starter, but he's one of the most important players on UF's roster.

The redshirt senior is the Trey Burton of the offensive line and can play all five positions.

“Five years, three offensive systems,” Koehne said. “I've learned over time.”

In the first two games this season, Koehne made his fifth and sixth career starts in place of Jon Halapio, who is scheduled to return for the Tennessee game after sitting out with a partially torn pectoral muscle.

It has been his first time starting at guard since 2011. Koehne played tackle in his three starts last season. This year, his primary position is center.

Koehne doesn't mind all the shuffling around he's done.

“My versatility,” he said, “has gotten me on the field faster than just playing at one spot, so I've learned to use it as an advantage of mine. That's a good thing for me.”

There aren't many 6-foot-5, 315-pounders who have the athleticism, range and technique it takes to juggle multiple roles along the line. Koehne not only has the ability, but the knowledge as well.

“It's all about how you learn the offense,” he said. “You don't want to learn it by one specific position. You want to learn the whole offense conceptually. You always want to know what your buddy's doing next to you.

“The whole time I've been learning the offense, I've been learning what the centers do and the tackles do to understand what I do better. Once you understand the whole offense, then it's really not very difficult.”

UF offensive coordinator Brent Pease called Koehne a hard worker who he has great confidence in.

“You look back at Kyle, he's played a lot of positions,” Pease said. “There were games last year where he's playing tackle. Now all of sudden he's a guard. Coach (Tim) Davis rested him a little bit (against Toledo) and played Ian (Silberman) because we have be careful with ourselves.

“If Jonotthan Harrison goes down, Kyle has to step in at center. He knows all the spots. He's kind of the guy across the board that causes a ripple effect. He's important to us.”

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