FRANKENMUTH, MI – At 6-foot-5 and 305 pounds, Kyle Main tends to stand out, even on a soccer field.
But that is now what is emerging from Frankenmuth football coach Phil Martin as the Eagles head to a Division 5 quarterfinal game at 1 p.m. on Saturday against Marine City.
“People look at linemen and see big, strong guys,” Martin said. “But we ask a lot more of our linemen than just being fat. We had some big players who didn’t start.
“They have to be smart… that’s the most important thing. They have so many decisions to make, so many adjustments to understand… and they have to make those decisions as a unit. People only see these big guys on the line, but they’re more than big. “
But it helps when they’re big, like Main, who won Associated Press Division 5 All-State First Team honors this season. It has garnered interest from NAIA schools and Division II Northwood University, but it will not announce its university destination until after the season.
“I feel like I’ve improved so much since being here,” said Main. “I learned a lot from working with all the different linemen and teammates. In addition, I got a lot bigger.
Main started his football career at Vassar High School, but his parents moved to Frankenmuth before his second season. He started at Frankenmuth University for the past three seasons and has gained 60 pounds, going from a 245 pound sophomore to a 305 pound senior.
“To be a three-year-old starter in play with the numbers and depth that we have, that means something,” said Martin. “Kyle started in his second season, and he continues to work and improve.”
There have been some changes, however. This season, he’s playing without a pair of 300-pound teammates Jon Stone and Jonathan Kelley. Stone took home all-state AP honors in 2019, with Kelley an honorable mention pick in all states.
He was also moved to protect himself from the tackle.
“Last year I probably fit in with these two guys in terms of size, but definitely not in terms of size,” Main said. “They were excellent linemen. With them gone, I went into custody this year. It was strange at first, but it didn’t take long to adjust. There are different things to focus on. You do a lot more double-team blocks with the center. “
Martin said the move made sense, given Main’s size and agility.
“A lot of teams will be doing stunts and sending linebackers down the middle, so we need that size down the middle, and he’s doing a good job getting to the edge,” said Martin. “We ask our linemen to do a lot in our corner attack, and Kyle is able to do things like reach the edge and seal the edge. He is also able to reach the second level to help us achieve big runs.
The Eagles, 9-0 and ranked No. 2 in the state in Division 5, play at home on Saturday against Marine City, who are 8-1. Marine City’s only loss was a forfeit against Pontiac Notre Dame Prep.
Frankenmuth’s offensive line has allowed just five sacks this season, paving the way for an Eagles offense that gained 2,596 yards with 41 touchdowns. Six different Frankenmuth runners gained at least 150 yards for the Eagles, who outscored their opponents, 355-54.
“They did a great job considering that we’ve moved a lot of them and they haven’t really had a summer to work together,” said Martin. “Zach Adkins came back to center, and it was huge because he made the calls on the line and made the adjustments. The rest of the line shifted around a bit, but they really did a good job of gelling as a unit and working together.
“It’s huge for our offense, and Kyle is a big part of it.”
Tall and intelligent.