Preview 2010 - C-USA Wide Receiver Rankings
Southern Miss WR DeAndre Brown
Preview 2010 - Ranking the Top Conference USA Wide Receivers
Preview 2010 - C-USA
The Top Receivers
- C-USA Skill Position Rankings
1. James Cleveland, Sr. Houston
Cleveland wasted no time becoming Case Keenum's preferred target, finishing sixth nationally with 104 catches for 1,214 yards and 14 touchdowns in his first year out of Trinity Valley (Tex.) Community College. The 6-2, 205-pound former Iowa recruit is a physical receiver, with big mitts to pluck the ball and enough toughness to play through a torn labrum in 2009. <
2. Tyron Carrier, Jr. Houston
In the slot, at "H" receiver, the 5-8, 163-pound Carrier is a jackrabbit, boasting track speed and the cutback moves to make defenders whiff in the open field. Like Sims at running back, the Cougars are content to simply get him the ball and then let him find the creases in the defense. Aside from being an incendiary return man on special teams, he also caught 91 passes for 1,029 yards and seven touchdowns, adding 10 carries for 125 yards and another score.
3. Damaris Johnson, Jr. Tulsa
Tulsa has access to one of the most exciting playmakers in Conference USA, the 5-8, 170-pound Johnson. A do-everything weapon on offense and special teams, he led the nation with 224 yards a game in 2009. Instant energy with the ball in his hands, he rushed for 175 yards, caught 78 passes for 1,131 yards and three touchdowns, and was among the nation's most dangerous return men. In one three-game stretch in November, he was unstoppable, catching 41 balls and commanding the attention of multiple defensive backs. Speedy and slippery, he's a defense's worst nightmare in the open field.
4. Dwayne Harris, Sr. East Carolina
A new offense and a shift to four-wide receiver sets has amped up the need for more capable hands. A lot more capable hands. The one sure-thing is the 6-0, 205-pound senior, quietly one of the nation's best all-purpose players. He does it all for the Pirates, catching 83 balls for 978 yards and seven touchdowns, rushing for 149 yards and five scores, and taking three kicks back for six. He'll line up on the inside at "Y" receiver, but has the athleticism to be used all over, including taking direct snaps from center.
5. Patrick Edwards, Jr. Houston
Lining up on the outside at "X" receiver is the 5-9, 175-pound junior, who recovered from a terrible leg injury in his first year to catch 85 passes for 1,021 yards and six touchdowns. A one-time walk-on, with a bigger track resume when he arrived, he's emerging into a consistent receiver and an explosive all-around playmaker. While he can still have problems beating the jam, when he gets into space, it's tough to track him down.
6. DeAndre Brown, Jr. Southern Miss
Although the production of junior DeAndre Brown dipped from his debut season, it was a victory that he even suited up for all but two games. He returned faster than most expected from a horrific broken leg suffered in the 2008 bowl game, making 47 receptions for 785 yards and nine touchdowns. His next-level talent is undeniable, combining a freakish 6-6, 231-pound frame with an enormous gait and the ability to sky well above defensive backs. The Eagles are harboring a superstar at the position, who could use 2010 as an audition for the 2011 NFL Draft. Now almost two years removed from the injury, he's a Biletnikoff Award contender with proper support from the quarterbacks.
7. Aldrick Robinson, Sr. SMU
Taking over as the go-to guy will be the 5-10, 178-pound senior, who could be joining his former teammate in the NFL in 2011. One of the fastest players June Jones has ever coached, he's especially explosive in the first 10 yards, getting into his cuts before the defenders can even get set. Dangerous after the catch, he made 47 receptions for 800 yards and five touchdowns, a level of production he's capable of dwarfing this season. Remember, he caught nine of Kyle Padron's passes for 176 yards in the bowl game, a harbinger of things to come.
8. Casey Robottom, Sr. Tulane
Picking up some of the slack at the "X" receiver after the loss of Jeremy Williams will be the 5-11, 177-pound Robottom, who finished second on the team with 50 catches for 584 yards and two touchdowns. While not physically intimidating, he's a polished receiver with the hands to be the quarterback's favorite target.
9. Frantrell Forrest. UAB
Forrest might finally be on the brink of All-Conference-USA recognition after catching a team-high 34 passes for 558 yards and nine touchdowns. The program's leading receiver over the last three seasons, he combines a long, 6-2, 195-pound frame with the stride to get behind the secondary. Still, he needs to work on his hands and concentration, especially with a young hurler about to become his battery mate.
10. Antavious Wilson, Soph. Marshall
The budding star of the ensemble is the 6-0, 196-pound Wilson, the program's leading receiver in his first year of eligibility. He won a job and then backed it up by catching 60 balls for 724 yards and three touchdowns. Already a polished pass-catcher, he really started to erupt in November, catching a season-high 13 passes against Southern Miss and nine more at UTEP.
11. Kris Adams, Sr. UTEP
The decline suffered by the 6-3, 195-pound senior a year ago was consistent with that of the entire passing game and QB Trevor Vittatoe. And like his battery mate, he's looking to recapture the form he had two years. In 2008, he caught 14 touchdown passes, but slipped to just 42 catches for 580 yards and two scores. A rangy acrobat, who'll go high up to snatch balls out of the air, he has the long stride to get behind the secondary.
12. Kamar Aiken, Sr. UCF
Aiken is an all-star with more help from his battery mate. He began putting it all together in 2009, catching 36 passes for 610 yards and nine touchdowns. Big and very strong at 6-2 and 218 pounds, he could follow former Knight Brandon Marshall into the NFL by fine-tuning the little things in his game.