The Unusual Suspects: Week 4

CORVALLIS -- It's a loss, and everything is secondary to that. But there were also some performances where credit is due and BF.C goes deeper to look at some of the unsung performances, lest they fade into the background when compared to the usual suspects.

Here are our Unusual Suspects:

No. 4 -- Markus Wheaton
He saw more action and looked explosive at times. The true freshman has tremendous athletic potential, and once he is up to speed will be a legit threat for OSU both on the fly sweep as well as down the field in the passing game.

Wheaton rushed three times for 15 yards. And Beaver Nation may see more of the speedster out of Chandler, Ariz. as the season rolls along.

No. 3 -- Brandon Hardin
Hardin was featured occasionally at corner in place of Tim Clark.

Hardin did not give up a big play and seems to have molded well at the position. He's deceivingly fast -- up close it's speed that's completely unexpected because he's so tall (6-2).

Known well by Beaver fans for his coverage skills on punts, Hardin is starting to position himself as a quality corner for the Beavs' future.

No. 2 -- James Dockery
Doc didn't jump out at you on the stat sheet -- not in the first category anyway. He was credited with only one assisted tackle.

But it was Dockery who broke up three passes against Arizona.

Those passes otherwise would have resulted in long pass plays and potential touchdowns.

It wasn't in doubt before this game, but Dockery has solidified himself even more post-Arizona as the Beavs' second corner opposite Clark.

No. 1 -- Beaver kick return team
While James Rodgers gets the on paper-credit for his 35 yard average on kick returns against Arizona, it's the guys ahead of him leading the way.

Patrick Henderson, Cameron Collins, Latu Moala, Joe Halahuni, Taylor Henry, Will Darkins, Zane Norris, Anthony Watkins, Keo Camat, Damola Adeniji -- all threw some nice blocks and ran solid interference in advance of Rodgers.

All Rodgers needs is a small crease and he can take it to the house -- and the guys in front of him know it.

Rodgers has been given great lanes to run through all four games this year, thanks to this unit and their execution.

If you have this game on tape, go back and watch the kick return men on slo-motion. The loss will still be painful. But the kick return team will at least help a small measure to lessen the load.


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