Spring Football Profile -- Kanan Sanchez
April 16, 2003
Corvallis, Ore. - Kanan Sanchez has more starts (21) on the offensive line than any other Beaver. Thus, the junior is expecting to play more of leadership role this season as one of the most experienced players on offense.
Sanchez came to OSU in the summer of 2000, redshirting his first year in the program. He has spent most of his collegiate career at guard, and will be part of an offensive line that will be blocking for among other players, one of the nation's premier running backs in Steven Jackson.
Sanchez attended West Covina High School in California, where he won numerous honors as a junior and senior playing for head coach and former Oregon State lineman Mike Maggiore. He was named the Sierra League's Lineman of the Year as a senior, and was recruited by several Pac-10 Conference schools. He also played on the defensive line and was the long snapper on punts and field goals.
The following is a question and answer with Kanan after a recent spring practice:
Q. First of all, what are your general impressions of the new coaching staff?
A. 'We're still trying to get accustomed to the staff. This staff is very different from the old coaching staff; basically the two staffs are on opposite ends of the spectrum.'
A. 'Coach Gilstrap is totally the opposite of Coach Smith. Coach Smith was aggressive and loud, while Coach Gilstrap is calm and more of a teacher. The overall system is very similar, just the terminology is different.'
Q. What did you concentrate on in the offseason?
A. 'In the past I didn't attend all my scheduled workouts. During the winter I made all my workouts and improved my academic study habits. I haven't always been successful in school, but I'm working hard on turning that around this year.'
Q. Practices seem a little more subdued, for lack of a better word, compared to previous seasons. Is that actually the case?
A. 'Coach Riley is trying to change the identity of the team. He wants us to be a no nonsense hard-working team - if we get into a fight we're kicked out of practice. The last several years we were the Raiders of the Pac-10 Conference, and I really enjoyed that, but this coaching staff has a different focus and we are adjusting.'
Q. You are the veteran of this offensive line in terms of starts, do you feel you have to take more of a leadership role this year?
A. 'Most definitely. That is why I wanted to make sure I made all of my offseason workouts and made more of an effort academically. I do have the most starts on the offensive line and I'm an upperclassmen, so I need to make a good impression on the younger guys.'
Q. The offense was for the most part very productive in 2002, can you improve on that this year?
A. 'I think once we learn the playbook we will have the best offense in the Pac-10. We have the entire offensive line returning, we have Steven (Jackson), Derek (Anderson), and James (Newson) back - we have a lot of talent on this side of the ball.'
Q. You have seen some very good offensive lines at OSU in your short career, can this unit be among the best?
A. 'This unit will be the best ever at this school! We return everybody on the line from last year, we have some depth, and we are a confident group. We are going to have a good year this season.'
Q. What are some of the nuances of playing the guard position?
A. 'You have to study the defense by watching a lot of video. You can pick up some subtle things when you watch individuals that will allow you to get a jump on the defender. But, most of all, you just need to be aggressive. I'm a nice guy off the field, but I probably have more fights than anybody does on the team -- I'm proud of that. It makes things a little more exciting.'
Q. What are your impressions of the defensive line?
A. 'Dwan (Edwards) has been excellent, Henry (Anderson) is getting better every day, Bill (Swancutt) is very good, and the ends are solid. Our line is tough, I don't see any drop in performance compared to last year.'