This season, one of the most exciting things for fans of Kansas University football are the high amount of skill players on offense we'll get to watch. Everyone knows by now that Todd Reesing is an amazing playmaker but we also know that he has been fortunate to have two stellar options to throw to the last couple of seasons. The sure handed, clutch catching, send me on a reverse to throw a bomb for a touchdown, Kerry Meier and the uber-athletic, all I do is catch touchdowns, Dezmon Briscoe. The receiving corp is one of the smallest questions about this offense going into 2009, but there is no doubt that they are still one of the most important things for this team to be successful and win it's first Big 12 North title.
I won't go into the Kerry Meier QB to WR story because we all know it and love it, and are sure to hear it a billion more times during his senior campaign. The Pittsburg, KS native's first season at WR was 2 seasons ago as a sophomore. The experiment to move him to WR was pretty surprising to most KU fans, but definitely very intriguing. Meier caught 26 balls for 274 yards and 2 TDs (including one gracing the cover of SI). Meier racked up those TE like numbers in pretty limited action, as I'm not sure the coaching staff was quite sold on their experiment, plus we had Marcus Henry, Dexton Fields, Derek Fine, and emerging Dezmon Briscoe all as viable options for "The Todd" to throw to.
In 2008, Henry and Fine were gone, and all of the sudden it made a lot of sense to let Meier go full time. He responded with what will most likely be one of the most impressive single seasons for a KU WR in history.
97 Rec., 1,045 yards and 8 TDs
Not mentioned in those numbers, the enormous amount of huge catches on 3rd downs that Meier made. And probably the most important line of the season to KU fans: @ Missouri: 14 Rec, 106 yards, 2 TDs.
One TD was a little bigger than most: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-1CdnLCUoY
So now the question becomes, in his senior year, can Meier possibly top last year? This is what I'm not so sure about, I've got to think it's going to top the overall numbers he had. Teams will definitely be keying on him a lot more after the monster season, but then again, one has to think that Minnesota was keying on him in the Insight bowl and he had 10 grabs for 113 and a TD. Meier has an uncanny ability of finding the holes in a defense and with good size and above average speed, he is someone that will certainly cause defenses fits. Plus, the other thing working for him is that other KU receiver one year younger. Oh yeah, did I mention Kerry Meier punts too?
Dezmon Briscoe will play on Sundays. I don't think there is any doubt about that, the question becomes when will he and where will he get drafted. This kid has enormous talent and upside and KU people are just hoping that he takes care of any off the field issues he's had (I'm confident he will). Dezmon Briscoe burst onto the Big 12 radar in KU's magical 2007 season. The freshman from Dallas quickly became one of Todd Reesing's favorite endzone targets when he caught 43 balls, 7 of which were TDs. Big things were expected of him in 2008 and he delivered emphatically. I could've saved all the words and shown you this to describe how special Briscoe is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Hzh8dBoBoA&feature=related
92 catches, 1,407 yards with 15 TDs
Big catches were frequent for Dezmon too, in the Insight Bowl against Minnesota, Briscoe made history for the Jayhawks, catching 14 balls for 201 yards and 3 TDs, non cooler than this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Tz6AY1yL3I&feature=related (with a little help from the magical Reesing)
This season shockingly only earned him 2nd Team All-Big 12 because of 3 other sophomores in the conference named, Maclin, Crabtree, and Bryant. Two of the three are gone as 1st round NFL draft picks and all eyes rest on Dezmon Briscoe and Dez Bryant this season.
I won't go through all the numbers that I could with Briscoe because there are just too many, but it's safe to say that KU people are expecting big things from the Junior this season. I would say most people believe that this will be his last season as a Jayhawk. Not only does he have the talent and draft status to leave but his QB that has made him even better will be leaving to graduation after this season.
So can Dezmon Briscoe top last season? Like Meier, it will be tough, but he does have other threats on his side that will surely help him find openings. Out of the two, I would say Briscoe has the better chance to top last season's numbers, just because of his deep threat possibities. For KU fans, the numbers won't matter as much as the win and loss record that Briscoe and Meier help produce. When it's all said and done, winning the North and beating Missouri and K-State become what really matters...and invitation to the Belitnikoff ceremony for the nation's top WR would be pretty damn cool too.