We have a pretty good idea of what to expect from the likes of Stepfan Taylor and Chase Thomas this season, but replacing Andrew Luck and the other members of last year's 11-win squad will require a team effort. Over the next 12 days we'll profile 12 less heralded Cardinal players whose ability to adjust to larger roles could determine whether Stanford is competing for a third straight BCS invite or settling for a spot in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.
Previously Featured: Drew Terrell | Anthony Wilkerson | Henry Anderson | Ed Reynolds
Name: Kevin Danser
Year: RS Jr.
Career Stats: 18 games played, no starts
Shoes to Fill: David DeCastro
Where He Came From: Danser, who played alongside future Stanford teammate Usua Amanam at Bellarmine Prep in San Jose, was rated as the 37th-best offensive tackle in the Class of 2009 and the No. 49 overall prospect in California by Rivals.com. In January of 2009, Danser chose Stanford over offers from Arizona and Washington.
What He's Done: After redshirting, Danser received some playing time off the bench in six games of the 2010 season. He was expected to be the starter going into 2011, but he struggled with dehydration and lost out on the job to David Yankey in camp. He still managed to see game action in 12 of Stanford's 13 games, usually as part of the jumbo package.
Training Camp Outlook: Going into the 2012 season, Danser is once again battling for a vacant guard position. This time, he and the Cardinal face the difficult task of trying to replace David DeCastro, the first-round pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers and one of the greatest linemen in the history of the program. Danser is seen by many as a front-runner for the starting spot, but he's battling against converted center Khalil Wilkes among others, and the decision is still up in the air. "I don't think anyone is penciled in to be a leader or a favorite," Danser said of the positional competition. "There are a lot of guys that want that spot. And you're filling in for someone great. It's not like a David DeCastro comes around every year. It's going to be tough, but we're all looking forward to competing." With Jonathan Martin's vacated left tackle spot up for grabs as well, there is a possibility that Yankey could move over to tackle, leaving both Danser and Wilkes with the starting guard spots.
Danser on Twitter: Unfortunately, it appears Kevin Danser does not have a Twitter account at this time.
Alphabetically Speaking: On the list of Stanford's all-time letterwinners, Danser falls between David Daniels (1988) and Samuel M. "Duker" Dapper (1978, 1979, 1980).
Numerically Speaking: Guard Paul Weinacht, Jr. wore No. 76 from 2000-2002 and started 16 games for the Cardinal.
(Slightly) Related Video: If this whole football thing doesn't work out, maybe he can just learn from another Kevin Danser.
Fun Fact: Danser was pretty excited after winning the Orange Bowl.