Junior Jarmon Fortson(6-3, 225) was third on the team with 45 catches for 610 yards and four touchdowns in 2009. The talented athlete is expected to build on that impressive sophomore season and become one of the nation's best; he will be the "x" receiver. With elite size Fortson is a mismatch for smaller DBs and it is really about one thing: consistency. This is a "money year" for a player with his abilities and we expect a big season, likely over 1,000 yards.
Junior Bert Reed(5-10, 170) was second on the team with 60 catches for 710 yards. Reed has elite burst as he reaches top speed in a few steps. He is virtually impossible to cover one on one, thus he poses problems for opposing defenses; Reed is locked into the "y" role. Reed's hands are reliable and he has improved his blocking skills. Look for him to have another great year, probably posting similar numbers to 2009.
Junior Taiwan Easterling(5-11, 195) missed the Spring playing baseball. Last year he caught 35 balls for 442 yards and a couple of touchdowns. It is always tough when a player misses time for baseball and he will need to play some catch-up early in camp. Expectations are a little down due to the missed time, but Easterling could surprise this year, particularly with the amount of attention that will need to focused on Fortson and Reed. It is good news indeed if he has a strong camp.
Sophomore Rodney Smith(6-6, 220) is coming along nicely after a solid Spring game. Blessed with elite height, he is still adjusting to the college game and will likely be brought along slowly. By the end of the year it is easy to see Smith being a bigger part of the offense. He brings obvious advantages in the red zone and is a player that possesses good ball skills. He only had one catch for seven yards as a freshmen.
Sophomore Willie Haulstead(6-3, 215) will also try to make an impact in 2010 after just one catch last season. He did stand out on special teams with 10 tackles and has an impressive pedigree. Like Smith, Willie will be fighting for snaps this year and it is up to him to show that he can be a reliable part of the offense. Haulstead should develop into a terror down the road.
Redshirt junior Cameron Wade(6-5, 215) will need to make a big impact in August Camp to fend off the youngsters; he did show solid growth during Spring practice and will need to continue on that trajectory. Obviously a big target Wade needs to display the skills to be an all around wide receiver. As a veteran we expect him to respond.
Redshirt sophomore A.J. Alexander(5-11, 184) is being moved back to wide receiver after spending time at cornerback. It will take a while to get re-acclimated to the position, but the speedster went for over 1,000 yards rushing in back to back seasons in high school.
Four talented true freshmen will enter the mix: Christian Green, Kenny Shaw, Greg Dent, and Jarred Haggins. Green is probably the most physically gifted, while Dent and Shaw are the most seasoned. Dent might be the first one to see the field because of a little better size. Haggins will need time to transition from QB, he also could get a look at Safety.
This is a deep unit in terms of talent and SHOULD get the best years yet out of Fortson, Reed, and potentially Easterling. The youth is good enough to push guys for playing time. In the end, we expect this to be one of the better groups in the country.