Michael Dyer Transfer Rumors: Can Gene Chizik Keep Auburn Afloat If He Bolts?
Auburn running back Michael Dyer is reportedly considering the possibility of transferring to Arkansas State to join former Tigers offensive coordinator and new Red Wolves head coach. Needless to say, losing the sophomore All-SEC back could be a setback to Auburn's 2012 season outlook.
Dyer, suspended after the regular season for a violation of team rules, did not play in the Chick-fil-A Bowl. Still, Dyer rushed for 1,242 yards and 10 touchdowns this season, becoming only the fifth running back in Auburn history to rush for more than 1,000 yards in back-to-back seasons.
However, before we pronounce Auburn's 2012 season as a lost cause, let's remember that the Tigers still have Onterio McCalebb for one more year. The junior carried the ball 112 times for 641 yards and five scores this year. Dyer had 242 carries for 1,242 yards and 10 touchdowns. If McCalebb can get around 240 carries, he could match Dyer's production. He actually had a better yards-per-carry average than Dyer.
Kiehl Frazier could also transition to become a full-time back. He had 76 carries for 327 yards and three touchdowns in limited action as a freshman. The Tigers also have a commitment from 4-star recruit Jovon Robinson, a top 10 prospect at the position. Then there are Tre Mason, Mike Blakeley, Quan Bray and Corey Grant. All in all, the Tigers are deep at running back. I still don't think any of them are as good as Dyer, though.
While the loss of Dyer would be a big one, let's be honest. Even with Dyer, Auburn was not going to be better than either LSU or Alabama next year. With or without him, they'll still finish with eight or nine wins next season and remain the fourth-best team in the division.
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