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2008 Kent State Preview - Offense
Kent State QB Julian Edelman
Kent State QB Julian Edelman
Posted Apr 28, 2008 2008 Preview - Kent State Golden Flash Offense

Kent State Golden Flashes

Preview 2008 - Offense

- 2008 Kent State Preview | 2008 Kent State Offense
- 2008 Kent State Defense | 2008 Kent State Depth Chart
- 2007 Kent State Preview | 2006 CFN Kent State Preview 

What you need to know: The Kent State offense was all about finding ways to get the diminutive Eugene Jarvis going on the ground, and it was an effective attack with running quarterback Julian Edelman was in. Edelman broke his arm, it was musical quarterbacks, and the team went in the tank. Now the plan is to get more of a passing game going with Giorgio Morgan getting every shot to see time under center this year, but the talent in the receiving corps is questionable. The offensive line is big and good at opening holes for the running game, but it's not good in pass protection.

Returning Leaders
Passing: Julian Edelman
98-189, 1,318 yds, 7 TD, 9 INT
Rushing: Eugene Jarvis
279 carries, 1,669 yds, 10 TD
Receiving: Phil Garner
27 catches, 284 yds, 1 TD

Star of the offense: Junior RB Eugene Jarvis
Player who has to step up and become a star: Senior WR Shawn Bayes
Unsung star on the rise: Sophomore RB Andre Flowers
Best pro prospect: Jarvis
Top three all-star candidates: 1) Jarvis, 2) QB Julian Edelman, 3) OT Augustus Parrish
Strength of the offense: Running game, quarterback options
Weakness of the offense:
Wide receiver, offensive line backups


Projected Starter: Senior Julian Edelman would be the unquestioned starter if he could just throw the ball down the field a little bit. The 6-0, 198 pounder is a tremendous runner who tore off 455 yards and two touchdowns in eight games, but he only completed 52% of his passes for 1,318 yards with seven touchdown passes and nine interceptions. Three of those scoring passes came in a blowout over Delaware State and there was no vertical production whatsoever. Even so, he fought through a torn PCL in his knee to lead the way to a decent start before getting knocked out for the year with a broken arm. This all came after having shoulder problems as a sophomore. Even with all his issues, and even though the team lost its last three games with him as the starter, it's still no coincidence that the Golden Flashes lost the four games when he was out.

Projected Top Reserves: True sophomore Giorgio Morgan's time had apparently come when Julian Edelman went down, and he was strong completing 18 of 28 passes for 247 yards and three touchdowns in the shootout loss to eventual MAC champion Central Michigan, and he complete five of eight passes for 27 yards and ran for 15 yards and a score against Northern Illinois, but he injured his MCL against the Huskies and was out for the final two games. Now he's being given every shot to win the starting quarterback job to use his tremendous passing potential to add a spark to a dormant air attack. At 6-4 and 200 pounds with decent mobility and a great arm, he can do it all. Now he just needs more of a chance.

Junior Anthony Magazu is the third man in the mix after getting a little bit of work last year. The 6-3, 196 pounder saw mop-up work against Ohio State and was the main man in the season finale against Buffalo completing 12 of 22 passes for 184 yards and two touchdowns in the loss. Health has been an factor so far with a sprained ankle last season and injury issues as a redshirt freshman, but he has the running ability and the passing talent to step in again if needed. He's a great No. 3 to have in reserve.

Watch Out For ... the coaching staff to start with Julian Edelman and move to Giorgio Morgan. Edelman can win right away, but Morgan gives the offense the passing game it's been missing.
Strength: Options. Anthony Magazu is probably the best No. 3 quarterback in the MAC. Edelman is one of the best runners, and Morgan is one of the best all-around quarterback prospects. The problems over the second half of last year should now be positives.
Proven bombers. The passing attack only averaged 166 yards per game and was among the least efficient in America. Morgan will be a great passer, but he has to prove he can do it on a regular basis. Edelman is serviceable, but he's a runner.
Outlook: The starting quarterback will be the one who can consistently add a passing element to the run-oriented offense. Edelman would probably lead the team to more wins right away, but Morgan is the one who could eventually take the team to another level. It might be a case of musical quarterbacks for a little while, but the production will be there.
Rating: 6

Running Backs

Projected Starter: Junior Eugene Jarvis is the nation's leading returning rusher and the only runner in the top ten coming back after tearing off 1,669 yards and the touchdowns. Even at only 5-5 and 170 pounds, he's a tough runner who almost never takes big shots and is impossible to find as his zips in and out behind his blockers. He ran for 100 yards or more in nine games and continued to produce even when he was the sole focus of every team's defensive game plan, and he was only held under 82 yards once in a late-season loss to Temple. With quickness, breakaway speed, and good hands, catching 23 passes for 306 yards and three scores, he can do it all. He'll be a serious threat to run for 2,000 yards if he can stay healthy.

Projected Top Reserves: There aren't too many carries to be had with Julian Edelman and Eugene Jarvis handling so much of the workload, but sophomore Andre Flowers will get a little bit of work. The team's third leading rusher got 64 carries for 279 yards and a touchdown as a steady reserve, and he should get between seven to ten carries a game once again. At 5-11, and 200 pounds, he brings more size (who doesn't?) and a little more power than Jarvis, and he can move. He could be a workhorse if needed.

Will true freshman Jacquise Terry get any work right away? The 6-0, 180-pound recruit is even more of a home-run hitting threat than Eugene Jarvis and Andre Flowers with tremendous speed and a nose for the goal line. He might be too good a weapon to keep on the bench for long as the coaching staff should try to find ways to get him the ball in space.

Watch Out For ... Eugene Jarvis to be in the team photo for the MAC Offensive Player of the Year. It'll be tough with CMU QB Dan LeFevour and Ball State QB Nate Davis almost certain to come up with big years, but Jarvis should be among the nation's leading rushers.
Strength: Speed and quickness. There's no one quicker than Jarvis, while Andre Flowers and Jacquise Terry have the speed to make big things happen.
Power. When a 5-5, 170-pound runner is your best short yardage option, there's no power running game.
Outlook: After finishing dead-last in the nation in rushing in 2005, the Golden Flashes turned it around in a big way averaging 158 yards per game in 2006 and then cranked out over 200 yards per game last season thanks to the incredible 1,669 yards from Eugene Jarvis. He's a unique weapon who'll be a guaranteed 100-yard day every time out, but Andre Flowers will get his share of carries to create a decent rotation. 
Rating: 8


Projected Starters: The offense will make a big attempt at improving the deep passing game, and senior Shawn Bayes needs to emerge as a star for that to happen. Little used for most of last season, he caught nine passes in the first three games and a mere five the rest of the way thanks to a knee injury. He was able to come back to make two catches for 47 yards and a touchdown against Central Michigan, but he just wasn't right over the second half of the season. With a 16.7 yard-per catch average making 14 grabs for 234 yards and three touchdowns, he has the potential to be a deep threat at split end.

The team's leading returning receiver, junior Phil Garner, is back at Flanker. A tough 5-11, 182-pound target, he's a decent short-to-midrange target making 27 catches for 284 yards and a touchdown, but he had way too many games when he made little impact. He made one catch in six games and was shut out against Bowling Green, and he's not a scary enough deep threat to make anyone worry about the home run.

5-10, 175-pound Aaron Robinson has the potential to be a big factor at the H. The sophomore made 12 catches for 156 yards, but he struggled once QB Julian Edelman went down going four of his final five games without a catch missing the Temple loss with a concussion. Even so, he's one of the team's rising stars who could become a breakout playmaker for the passing game.

One of the interesting new targets will be 6-3, 222-pound Jameson Konz at tight end. The former linebacker made 43 tackles and two sacks last season, and now he'll bring his 4.4 speed and tremendous athleticism to the offense. Blocking and being physical shouldn't be a problem, and he has the quickness to be a matchup nightmare, but he'll have to show consistent hands.

Projected Top Reserves: 5-11, 181-pound junior Mark Woodson has the speed to become a dangerous deep threat, but it hasn't happened yet. He didn't get into the mix last year, and now he has to bring his 10.8 100-meter speed to split end behind Shawn Bayes.

Sophomore Alan Vanderink was a decent possession receiver last season averaging 7.5 yards per catch on 13 grabs with a touchdown. The star high school running back started to come on at the end of his true freshman season, and with his quickness and moves, he should start doing far more with the ball in his hands behind Phil Garner at Flanker.

While Jameson Konz is a good-looking prospect now that he moved to tight end, sophomore Jonathan Simpson should still play a big role. More of a big receiver than a tight end, the 6-5, 225 pounder needs to get more involved in the offense after making two catches for 14 yards. Originally recruited as a star linebacker prospect, he should be a good target with more time.

Watch Out For ... the Golden Flashes to force the ball deep whether the passing game works or not. While this isn't an offense designed to go vertical, the receivers will try to do more to hit the home run so the ground attack can have a little more room to move.
Strength: Tight end. Considering the position has undergone a wholesale change with Jameson Konz moving from linebacker, and Jonathan Simpson starting to get more involved in a true sophomore season after spending his high school career as a star linebacker, this should be a plus. These two should add some more flash than Tom Sitko provided last year.
Talent. Is there a receiver who'll keep defensive coordinators up at night? There was one, Rashad Tukes, and he was booted off the team. Can Phil Garner go from serviceable to dangerous? Can Aaron Robinson turn into the deep threat he started to become before suffering a concussion? There are plenty of question marks.
Outlook: There are several decent targets with just enough quickness to get more out of the passing game, but this will certainly be an area of concern until the corps actually does something. When the leading receiver only catches 27 passes and a running back catches three of the 13 touchdown passes, there's work to be done. The coaching staff will give Phil Garner, Aaron Robinson and Shawn Bayes plenty of chances to get deep, and former linebacker Jameson Konz has the speed to stretch the field, but the results have to come.

Offensive Linemen

Projected Starters: The big offensive losses are at guard, but KSU might have found itself a gem for the right side in JUCO transfer Mike Roder. The 6-4, 310-pound junior was an all-star for Scottsdale CC in Arizona and should be one of the team's strongest run blockers from day one. He can move well for his size.

Stepping in on the left side will be redshirt freshman Michael Fay, an undersized 6-4, 265-pound guard who'll need to be part of a rotation. A promising blocker with room on his frame to add more weight, he'll be great on the move and should be strong when he's able to pull. Blasting through the bigger defensive linemen will be a problem.

Back at center, at some point, will be 6-2, 295-pound senior Josh Perry, who started 11 games last season but missed spring ball hurt. Very strong and very tough, he moves well and can get down the field. He bulked up over the last year and should be an even stronger run blocker.

Senior Augustus Parrish is back for his third straight year at left tackle with 24 career starts under his belt. At 6-5 and 305 pounds, he's a big blocker who has been solid for the running game, but mediocre in pass protection. Even at his size he could stand to get a bit stronger and isn't going to pile-drive too many defenders, but he'll spring plenty of big runs. The second-team All-MAC performer will be the line's key blocker from the start.

6-4, 280-pound Pat Reedy stepped in and turned into a decent starter late last season. A good athlete who has bulked up and gotten much stronger over the last year, and now he should be a a key all-around blocker at right tackle.

Projected Top Reserves: 6-5, 305-pound senior Travis McGraw was one of the team's top linemen for a few years before tearing up his knee. He has 22 career starts, mostly at guard, and he'll move back to right guard after spending last year working at right tackle. With his experience at left guard he can play on either side.

Considering Michael Fay is only 265 pounds, 6-0, 280-pound junior Dante Campbell needs to play a big role in the right guard rotation. He got a start against Northern Illinois and has been a decent backup. One of the lines' strongest players, he can pound away.

Watch Out For ... Pat Reedy. A good young prospect who started to become a factor last year, now he should be a fixture at right tackle for the next three years. He'll have to work through mistakes, but he has the potential to be a good one.
Strength: Run blocking. There's decent size across the front and enough mobility to be creative for the running game. The group does what's needed to create the holes for Eugene Jarvis to dart through.
Pass protection. Awful over the last few years, the Golden Flash front five gave up over three sacks per game and need to be far more consistent. Part of the problem, at least stat-wise, was having a running quarterback in Julian Edelman taking some losses, but the pass protection was lousy when other quarterbacks were in, too.
Outlook: The key will be the guard play. Replacing Shawn Donaldson and Joe Marafine will be tough, but JUCO transfer Mike Roder should be a good one and undersized Michael Fay has potential. Augustus Parrish is a good veteran on the outside and Pat Reedy is a rising star on the right. Developed depth is an issue; an early rash of injuries would be disastrous.
Rating: 4.5