#90 Laton Dowling
Position: Defensive End
Previous College: None
Status: On Scholarship
Laton Casper Dowling (b. June 26, 1991) is an in-state product who has served a role on special teams in each of the last three seasons, while also seeing increased playing time on defense as a reserve.
Although he will push for more playing time during his senior campaign, he is reaching the end of his shelf life as a potential starter or impact player. It kind of feels like we've recruited over him in several classes, in some ways.
Despite horrendous depth problems on the defensive line, the coaches were able to redshirt Dowling in 2010, instead of throwing him to the Big 12 wolves. He then saw only slight playing time in 2011, mostly on special teams.
In 2012, his chief statistical contribution was returning a few pooch kickoffs, even though he played more on the defensive line than he had in the past.
Last year, Dowling played in all 13 games, his most significant playing time yet. He had three tackles, including 2.5 for loss and an 8-yard sack at Texas Tech, and also had a TFL against UMass and half a TFL against Kansas.
Rivals.com rated Dowling as the 49th-best weakside defensive end prospect in the class of 2010 and the 10th-best overall prospect in the state of Kansas, which was good enough for a three-star ranking.
He probably will be relied upon to provide depth — especially at defensive end — on the defensive line, but I'm still not expecting too much out of him this year. Both Jordan Willis and Tanner Wood have higher upside as reserves.