Kyle Rose isn't a hard guy to find.
Whether it’s on the field during a game or in the team room during player interview sessions, Rose has a presence that’s hard to ignore.
The 6-foot-4, 298 pound defensive lineman from Centerville, Ohio won’t be hard to find on Saturdays this season, as the rising junior switches from defensive end to nose tackle in an improved multischeme, three-man front defense.
From his spot at nose tackle, which is positioned head up on the center in the middle of the defensive line, Rose along with the two defensive ends will be charged mainly with stopping the opponents run game and getting a pass rush.
Defensive coordinator Tony Gibson said he doesn’t want teams to be able to run the ball against the defense this season. Rose said it’ll make the linebackers and secondary’s jobs much easier defending the pass.
“This is a passing league, but last year Baylor ran the ball on us (476 rushing yards),” Rose said. “So if we stop the run, then that makes the offense have to try to pass the ball. And by dropping eight we have an advantage. So, if we can stop the run with three, drop eight, we have an advantage against the pass.”
Of course this is much easier said than done, but Rose said he believes the defense will be improved from last year mainly because an emphasis is now being placed on every man doing his own job.
“I think guys got out of their assignment and tried to make the play themselves,” he said about last year’s defensive mishaps. “You just got to do your own job. Don’t do somebody else’s job. Because, you know, if 10 guys are playing the right defense and one guy’s playing the wrong defense, then everybody’s playing the wrong defense.”
Over the winter, the defense went through a major overhaul as far as adjusting the scheme goes.
Tony Gibson was promoted to revamp a defense that was No. 101 in total defense last season, and head coach Dana Holgorsen also added former-Penn State assistant Tom Bradley and former WVU linebacker Damon Cogdell to the staff to coach the defensive line.
“Coach Gibby, (Gibson) he’s a fiery guy,” Rose said. “I can speak for our room, having coach Cogdell and coach Bradley, they both feed off of each other and kind of make each other better coaches which helps us because we get the best out of them.”
Rose figures to be instrumental in whether or not the Mountaineers’ defensive line can shut down opponent’s running games this season. He’s a big body in the middle and has a nonstop motor that makes him an ideal candidate to man the nose tackle position.
He will get his first test on Aug. 30 against No. 2 Alabama.