The 90 Illini #44: Austin Teitsma July 19, 2012
6′-2″, 280 lbs.
rs-Sophomore (on scholarship, 3 years to play 3)
Glenbard South HS / Glen Ellyn, Illinois
ALE Ranking last year: #51
ALE Ranking in 2010: #85
What I Know About Him:
Now we’re getting into the two-deep. 22 starters = 44 players on the two-deep (plus a kicker or a punter or two), so by #44 on a list like this, you have to be into the two-deep guys.
Austin Teitmsa is the smiliest player I’ve ever observed. Seriously. I’ve never seen him not smiling. Walking off the practice field in Rantoul? Smiling. Walking into the KFHB luncheon in San Francisco? Smiling. Blocking sled drills in spring ball? Smiling. Go do a Google image search right now. Betcha he’s smiling in 4 out of every 5 pictures, even at practice.
Football? He’s a defensive tackle. An undersized defensive tackle who doesn’t look like a DT in pads but has just enough pest and high motor in him to make himself useful on the football field. In that sense, he reminds me of Mike Ware, walkon defensive tackle who was an underrated part of the Rose Bowl team in 2007 (you remember him as the guy with eye black carrying J Leman on his shoulders after the Ohio State game).
Teitsma was also a wrestler in high school. And you know my affinity for wrestlers on the football field. Missouri brought in a 2-star offensive lineman a few years ago named Justin Britt. I saw him wrestle in high school, and I think he’s a future superstar offensive tackle for them. I feel similarly about Teitsma – quick feet for a big guy, mostly thanks to a wrestling background.
What I Expect From Him:
He’s Glenn Foster’s backup at the 3-technique defensive tackle spot until one of the freshmen proves otherwise. Last year, Wisdom Onyegbule and Craig Wilson edged out Teitsma and his redshirt counterpart Jake Howe for the backup spots. With Onyegbule and Wilson having graduated, it’s now up to Teistma and Howe to back up the starters.
And with Foster graduating and Spence likely going pro, Teistma and Howe are fighting for starting spots in 2013 and 2014. It will be interesting to see how that plays out. Howe was converted from high school fullback to defensive tackle. Teitsma was an undersized high school defensive end, who became an even more undersized defensive tackle. So with Tim Beckman bringing in higher-ranked high school defensive tackles (Teko Powell, Kenton Gibbs, etc), it will be interesting to see how the undersized Teitsma fares in 2013 and 2014. My guess: with his crazy high motor that never stops, he wins the job.