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MySanAntonio.com OC Tim Beck has high praise for tackles Sam Cosmi, Derek Kerstetter


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AUSTIN – In his three years at Texas, offensive coordinator Tim Beck reckons he’s never had a better group of starting tackles.

High praise considering former All-American left tackle and Dallas Cowboys second-round pick Connor Williams was on roster in 2017, the first year of this new regime’s tenure. Still, it’s hard to poke holes in Beck’s assessment.

Redshirt sophomore left tackle Sam Cosmi and junior right tackle Derek Kerstetter have been key pieces of the iron wall shielding quarterback Sam Ehlinger from harm. Beck credited offensive line coach Herb Hand with helping them refine their techniques.

“I think Herb deserves a lot of credit,” Beck said Wednesday. “He’s done a great job with those guys.

“And Sam has played left tackle a lot of his career. As far as Derek, I think two years ago he was our starting right tackle so it’s not like he hasn’t played the position at the collegiate level.”

Cosmi in particular has emerged as one of the best all-around blockers in the Big 12. Whenever he opts to turn pro, it’s possible he could become the first Longhorn offensive lineman selected in the first round since Mike Williams went fourth overall in 2002.

And Kerstetter has solid wherever he’s been shuffled since being thrust into the starting lineup as a true freshman due to a rash of injuries.

“Coach McKnight and his staff and the strength and conditioning program has made them really strong football players,” Beck said. “They became more flexible, they can bend more. They’re powerful, athletic. And that all equates to confidence. When you start having that confidence you just start playing better. Those two guys right now, you can see it.”

Those two tackles helped buy Ehlinger all sorts of time in the pocket, even last week...

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