Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

K-State's Dalton Risner Right at Home at Tackle Position

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

K-State's Dalton Risner Right at Home at Tackle Position

Article excerpt

When Dalton Risner arrived in Dallas for the 2016 Big 12 football media day, he had no idea his football career would soon change.

Risner was Kansas State's center, starting every game of the 2015 season as a redshirt freshman. That's where he figured to be for his sophomore year, the position he had played his entire career, but a couple of weeks later when fall camp opened offensive line coach Charlie Dickey had a startling proposal.

"It was so sudden," Risner recalled. "Coach Dickey came to me and said he wanted me to try right tackle because we were having some trouble there. I went out to seven-on-seven practice and he watched me and afterward came up to me and said, 'You're going to be my All-Big 12 right tackle this year.'

"I didn't know what to think. Part of me was like, 'You've got to be kidding me.' I had played center all my life, but another part of me knew I had to do what's best for the team."

Risner made the transition without a hitch. He proved Dickey right, earning first team All-Big 12 honors on the coaches team and second team from the Associated Press.

As he returned to Dallas recently for this year's Big 12 media day, Risner is completely settled into his new position.

"I'm very comfortable at right tackle," said Risner, a 6-foot-5, 300-pound junior from Wiggins, Colo. "I'm just as comfortable as I was at center, but at the same time I still want to be a lot better. I'll watch film and see that I'm too high in my stance and guys were getting underneath me. There were plenty of games where I made (quarterback) Jesse (Ertz) get flushed out of the pocket so this year I have aspirations to do a lot better job protecting him."

Risner's learning curve at his new position last year was accelerated during practice while going head-to-head against Wildcat defensive end Jordan Willis, who would be Big 12 defensive player of the year and a third-round draft pick by the Cincinnati Bengals. …

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