The 4,000 fans the 6-foot-1 cornerback out of Pace High School in Miami, Florida played in front of in high school was nothing in comparison to the 85,000-plus fans in Norman, Oklahoma at the rowdy Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.
"It was kind of weird," Van Dyke said. "When I ran through the tunnel and saw all of (the fans) in the stands it really shocked me."
Throughout the game, the team was told by Head Coach Randy Shannon to remain composed and keep their communication open. The Hurricanes however had numerous issues communicating and keeping the assignments. For Van Dyke, however, the biggest issue with the crowd noise came following the big play.
"The crowd was real loud when they made the big play," Van Dyke said. "We have to go back to the drawing board every day in practice and just talk to each other on the field because there wasn't a lot of talking. "
But other than a raucous crowd, he faced the biggest challenge of his fledgling college career, lining up against the 6-foot-4, 219 pound wide receiver Malcolm Kelly.
"I learned a lot," Van Dyke said. "I have to put my A game out there every week and Malcolm Kelly is a good receiver."
A member of the 2007 Biletnikoff Award Watch List – an award given to the nation's best wide receiver, Kelly went off on Miami to the tune of 102 yards on 4 catches, three of which went for touchdowns.
"He is amazing," Van Dyke said. "He taught me a lot. A physical WR can get the best of you. He is a good wide receiver."
If there was anything to take away from the game would be a learning experience. The team now has a goal to shoot for, something to put up and say ‘That is the level we have to get to play at.' It is something Van Dyke plans on using as motivation throughout the year and his career.
"This is a good defense, good secondary," Van Dyke said. "After that game we can't get lower we are going up."