December 7, 2010

Position analysis: Pass catchers

As we look to next football season, we do a positional analysis to see what the recruiting needs remain for the Colorado State Rams. Today, we take a look at the wide receivers and tight ends of the Rams as we head into the off-season.

Who is leaving:  Colorado State will lose a pair of their more productive targets as tight end Eric Peitz and Tyson Liggett will be moving on. Peitz has been the Rams' tight end for the past two seasons since Kory Sperry left for the National Football League. Last season, Peitz caught 15 passes for 187 yards and three scores. Liggett may not look like much during pre-game warm-ups, but all he did was produce. This season he led the Rams with 41 receptions for 380 yards.

Who will return:  Since coming to Fort Collins two years ago, Lou Greenwood has easily been one of the most explosive athletes on the CSU football team. This year he made the move from running back to wide receiver and developed into a solid wideout, catching 34 passes for 474 yards and two scores. More importantly, Greenwood offered the Rams a deep threat. T.J. Borcky is another wideout who seen a position change since arriving at Colorado State. The former quarterback started for the Rams in the "Z," receiver spot this season, catching 18 passes for 157 yards and a score.

A look at the two-deeps:  Tony Drake came to Colorado State with high expectations and didn't disappoint. The Dallas speedster spent time as both a running back and a receiver. From the receiver spot, he caught six passes for 71 yards and has a bright future somewhere in the Ram offense. Byron Steele took a step forward in his development towards the end of the season. the 6-foot-3, 211-pounder has the size and speed you like to see in a receiver and is starting to add some production to the mix. He ended the season with 20 catches or 313 yards. Matt Yemm backed up Liggett last season at the "Y," position and accounted for a quiet 21 receptions for 265 yards and the Rams' first score of the season. Marquise Law will go into his Junior year next season after accounting for 16 receptions and 173 yards. Any one of these receivers could start the spring at the top of a very fluid depth chart for CSU.

Coming up the depth chart:   In addition to Tony Drake, the Rams went to Texas for two other wideouts in the recruiting class of 2009. Kivon Cartwright stands 6-foot-4 and 215 pounds. He and Thomas Coffman (5-foot-10, 170) will try to crack the two-deeps next season. Both suffered injuries in their first year on-campus and weren't able to show what they could do, despite the coaches' admiration of both. Local products Mike Moore (Greeley) and Michael Liss (Fort Collins) and Brett Etherton are also listed on the roster.

Whose in the boat in the class of 2011:   The Rams haven't yet received a commitment from a wide receiver. However, the Rams have received verbal commitments from three running backs, any of whom could be moved to wideout. 2010 recruit James Boonewas primed to come in last year, but an academic issue has delayed his arrival to Fort Collins. He said last month that he anticipates arriving this Jan. Former walk-on Christopher Robinson spent this season in community college and also anticipates re-joining the team in the spring.

Whose still out there:   The Rams are on the hunt for a speed receiver as well as a "best-available," sort of athlete whether that be a running back or a wide receiver, or a running back who could become a receiver. Three-star Chris Gallon is still out there, but seems to be waiting to see if any BCS-level school offers come in. There are a number of receivers out there with CSU offers right now. Look for more buzz coming from Florida receiver Charles Lovett. A pair of Q's - Quinten Gardner and QQuenton Bundrage also have the Rams' attention. Lewis Washington could also figure into the mix here. The Texas running back has the skill to play either running back or receiver. Treiner Orr is likely to visit CSU and is looked at as a nice option, if the Rams can pry him from Illinois.

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