PROVO, Utah – Blake Freeland joined BYU after never snapping down the offensive line in a football game. After four fast seasons, he exits the BYU football program as one of the top offensive tackle prospects for the 2023 NFL draft.
Freeland, who accepted an invitation to Reese’s Senior Bowl last month, sent an official farewell from BYU on Tuesday. The 6-foot-8, 305-pound offensive lineman wrote “Thank you BYU” on Instagram and Twitter with a hyped video showcasing some of his accomplishments and highlights.
Thank you BYU💙🤙 pic.twitter.com/uMuLmOCAGE
— Blake Freeland (@FreelandBlake) January 17, 2023
Freeland started in 41 games in offensive tackle for BYU. From 2019 to 2020 he turned to proper tackle. For the last two seasons of his collegiate career, he played as a left tackle for Carolina Panthers offensive lineman Brady Christensen.
Blake Freeland was a four-year starter at BYU
During his four seasons as an offensive lineman, Freeland allowed just two sacks in his 41 career starts. In 2022, Freeland was the second-highest offensive tackle behind only Notre Dame’s Joe Alt by Pro Football Focus.
Due to the eligibility year off caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Freeland had an opportunity to return to BYU for another season. But when Freeland entered the 2022 campaign, he was already making waves as a draft prospect on day one or two.
Since 2005, BYU has selected only one offensive lineman in the NFL draft. That was the aforementioned Brady Christensen. Freeland will likely be second, both coached by Kalani Sitake.
Rare athlete in the offensive tackle position
Freeland’s path to becoming a dominant offensive lineman is likely often discussed leading up to April’s NFL draft in Kansas City. In high school, Freeland didn’t play an offensive line. Instead, he was a quarterback, tight end, and all-around athlete at Herriman High School.
In addition to football, he played basketball and track and field during his preparatory career.
Freeland signed with BYU as a three-star prospect via an offer from Utah. He arrived at BYU as a 260-pound prospect and immediately set about adding weight to his body. Now he’s up to 305 pounds.
The 2023 NFL Draft will take place April 27-29 in Kansas City, Missouri. Additionally, BYU is hosting a Pro Day in late March.
Mitch Harper is a BYU insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE TO) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday 12pm-3pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s coverage of BYU’s move to the Big 12 conference on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.