August 21, 2015 Louisville, KY. (Analyzed Sports) By: S.K. Patrick
Who Can Replace Vante?
Louisville receivers coach Lamar Thomas has a daunting task this year. He’s has to replace one of the greatest receivers to ever run routes at the University of Louisville. De’vante Parker was one of the most dominant receivers in college football last year. Parker was out over half of his senior season with an injury to his foot, but when he returned he set the field on fire. He went on to catch 43 passes for 855 yards and five touchdowns in six games. In half a season he was a second-team All-ACC selection. He tied the school record for career touchdown receptions with 33 and had 10 100-yard games in his career. The first round pick of the Miami Dolphins was rated the 26th-best WR in the nation by scout.com out of Louisville Ballard high school (Ky.) His production will be missed but another Louisville native is set to fill the void.
James Quick out of Louisville’s Trinity High School is a fan favorite. Quick caught 36 passes last season with a per catch average of 15.7 yards. With his speed, quickness and a season under coach Bobby Petrino’s offense, Quick is set to become Louisville’s next receiving star. Quick’s skill level and play making ability has him capable of contributing more to the Cardinals offense this season. Quick will be playing in the slot, allowing him to use his sprinter’s speed to out run, or break away from slower linebackers and safeties.
“It’s going to take everybody,” said Quick. “We’re going to need every receiver we have on our roster to replace DeVante Parker. And that’s not a problem because we have the guys to do it.”
The other guys that can help out the receiver core is at the tight end position. Cole Hikutini has been pushing Charles Stanberry and Keith Towbridge for snaps in practice this off-season. The real key to replacing Parker are among the young wide receivers who have joined the program as well. Alphonso Carter, formerly known as Paul Harris attended Iowa Western Community College after playing one season at the University of Tennessee. A 4-star prospect by Rivals.com coming out of high-school, Harris was a Maryland All-State selection in 2012 after totaling 32 receptions for 732 yards and 11 touchdowns. His build and length (6’3 ft, 205lbs) are similar to Parker allowing him to high point the football for toss up catches in the air.
Jamari Staples played in nine games last season, starting four at UAB and totaled nine receptions for 190 yards and a score. He didn’t get too many chances to shine by being buried on the depth chart, but his down the field ability excites Louisville coaches.
The X-factor will be the Ja’Quay Savage who Redshirted due to NCAA transfer rules. He appeared in ten games for Texas A&M and caught four passes for 71 yards and a touchdown. These numbers don’t pop out, or impress, but he has the potential to become a stud from the play of his early days. He joined Texas A&M after playing at Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia and was rated the No. 2 prospect nationally in the prep school ranks by Rivals.com
It will not be an easy task trying to replace the production of a talent like De’Vante Parker, but this season will be more about the offense being able to move the ball as a team, than relying on the gifts of one indivdual. Head Coach Bobby Petrino, one of the greatest offense minds in the game, will have Louisville in the thick of things in the ACC fight. What you think Cards fans, who can replace Vante?
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