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As Nebraska's preseason camp approaches, Husker Extra is counting down the 30 most intriguing players on the roster.

A couple of notes: This isn’t best player or most important. As a list based on intrigue, it skews a bit toward youth and new players, but there will be plenty of established contributors, too.

The only scholarship player not considered for the list is defensive lineman Jahkeem Green, because at the outset of our countdown he is still in junior college and is only verbally bound to Nebraska.

No. 14: Bryce Benhart, freshman, OT 

There are big freshmen, and then there's Nebraska rookie offensive lineman Bryce Benhart. 

The Lakeville, Minnesota, native is listed at 6-foot-9 and 305 pounds and is the most physically imposing of an incoming quintet of offensive linemen. 

Benhart draws perhaps the most intrigue early on because he's seen by some as perhaps the closest to being ready to play right away. Fellow freshmen Matthew Anderson, Jimmy Fritzsche and Michael Lynn each have big frames, but are lighter than Benhart by anywhere from 15 to 50 pounds. Norfolk's Ethan Piper is also starting off on the offensive side, making another potential interior option. 

Frost at Big Ten Media Days reiterated the need to figure out left guard and center on NU's offensive line. Perhaps a veteran rises to the occasion. It's a quote like this one from Frost, though, that draws intrigue to a young guy like Benhart. 

"If one of those guys steps up, we're going to be really glad to have it happen," Frost said. "I think it's going to give us more depth and some more flexibility on the O-line." 

Benhart is a heavyweight wrestling champion from Minnesota and is dedicating himself full-time to football for the first time now that he's at Nebraska. How much progress can he make during his first summer and preseason camp? The answer could potentially change the complexion of Greg Austin's room. 

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Contact the writer at pgabriel@journalstar.com or 402-473-7439. On Twitter @HuskerExtraPG.

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Sports writer

Parker joined the Journal Star as the University of Nebraska football beat writer in August 2017. He previously covered Montana State athletics for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2012.

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