The Ball State Cardinals struggled with pass defense a season ago, there is no doubt or denial of that fact.
The Cardinals ranked dead-last (13th place) in pass defense, giving up over 292 yards a game. This lead to the Cardinals giving up 35.8 points a game a season ago, which ranked 12th out of 13 teams.
So what happens next for the Cardinals and new Defensive Coordinator Tim Daoust? The Cardinals certainly need some help and an infusion of talent, they got that in a big way with the signing of three players in the Class of 2016 that can provide an immediate impact to the secondary.
Lamar Anderson, 5-10 179, DB, St. Louis (Christian Brothers) - First and foremost is cover corner Lamar Anderson. The Cardinals landed a major coup with the signing of Anderson, a 3-star caliber DB who had several offers including Kansas. Anderson's stats may be a bit misleading - given he only intercepted 2 passes as a prep, but that is because teams simply wouldn't throw is way. What Anderson brings is confidence, swagger, and a great amount of talent. He has great footwork and the ability to change directions quickly and smoothly. Anderson will see the field sooner than later in the Cardinals struggling secondary.
DeAndre House, 6-0 180, DB, Baltimore (Douglass) - Speaking of talent, the Cardinals again made major waves with the late addition of House. The 6-0 corner announced his commitment days after the signing day festivities in a quiet way, but that is the only thing quiet about House. The physical corner is a ballhawking nightmare for opposing QBs. As a senior, House picked off 5 passes and is able to quickly take the INT and capatilize, averaging over 17 yards a return. House picked Ball State over multiple Power 5 offers and will also factor in to the secondary if eligible.
Mitchell Larsen, 6-0 180, S, Fairfield, OH - Lost in the commotion and excitement of the Anderson signing was the addition of Larsen to the Cardinal secondary. Not the biggest or fastest S, Larsen is still a stud. He reminds many of former Cardinals Sean Baker, who came in as an unheralded recruit who turned his collegiate career into a handful of seasons in the NFL. Larsen is noted first as a big hitter and a ball hawk. Larsen tallied 6 INTs over his career at Fairfield and posted 56 tackles including 2 forced and 3 recovered fumbles as a senior. Larsen is a lead by example guy who is who you want on the field calling coverages and who you want leading in the lockerroom and in the weight room in a few years.