College Football Fast-Forward: 2009 Impact Freshmen, Tight Ends, and Kickers
This is final installment of our five-part series analyzing the potential fantasy impact of the 2009 incoming freshmen.
Part One of our story proves that you should temper your emotions when it comes to freshmen, at least from a fantasy standpoint. Try not to get too caught up in the hype that a hotshot recruit brings to campus before he has even played a down.
TE Summary: No freshman tight ends made a significant fantasy impact in 2008. That is pretty amazing, considering it doesn’t take too much to make a statistical impact at this position. 400 yards and five touchdowns will rank you as a Top 20 fantasy tight end.
Best Chance to Make 2009 Fantasy Impact
Morrell Presley (UCLA) [pictured]
Rivals rank: No. 12 wide receiver
Also had offers from: USC
Why he’s on the radar: When a wide receiver plays the tight end position, it can equate to fantasy success. Presley is rated as the No. 12 wide receiver in the land, but will probably sneak onto fantasy rosters as a tight end. The Bruins need playmakers on offense, and Presley should see action early.
What to be concerned about: Granted, UCLA dealt with a rash of quarterback injuries, but the Bruins passing game was Bru-tal in Neuheisel’s first year as head coach. As a team, they only threw nine touchdown passes on the season.
Keep an Eye on These Guys in August
Ra’shede Hageman (Minnesota)
Rivals rank: No. 6 tight end
Also had offers from: Ohio State, Florida, Oklahoma
Why he’s on the radar: Quarterback Adam Weber and wide receiver Eric Decker both return to bolster the Gopher passing game.
With starting tight end Jack Simmons graduating, defenses will be keying on Decker, which could open up opportunities for Hageman to contribute right away.
What to be concerned about: The departing Simmons grabbed 36 balls for 331 yards and two touchdowns in 2008. Not exactly fantasy gold.
Tracy Moore (Oklahoma State)
Rivals rank: No. 17 tight end
Also had offers from: Colorado, Kansas, Kansas State
Why he’s on the radar: Brandon Pettigrew graduates. If Moore can get on the field, he will see plenty of passes in the Pokes’ high-powered offense.
What to be concerned about: Moore will battle Jamal Mosley and others for the starting job.
Dion Sims (Michigan State)
Rivals rank: No. 5 tight end
Also had offers from: Ohio State, Michigan, Tennessee
Why he’s on the radar: Tremendous athlete who should see the field early. MSU will be breaking in a new quarterback in ‘09 and tight ends have been known to serve as safety valves for young signal-callers.
What to be concerned about: Will the MSU offense utilize Sims’ considerable talents? Starting tight end Charlie Gantt returns and his fantasy numbers were very average last season (19-302-4).
Rivals Rank - Player - School
UNR ATH - Tyler Chambers (Houston)
#7 TE - Barrett Matthews (Texas)
#1 TE - Logan Thomas (Virginia Tech)
#32 TE - Jacoby Bell (Southern Miss)
#3 TE - Philip Lutzenkirchen (Auburn)
#13 TE - Richard Wilson (BYU)
#2 TE - Arthur Lynch (Georgia)
#4 TE - Levine Toilolo (Stanford)
#24 TE - Tyler Eifert (Notre Dame)
Kicker Summary: This year’s top two kicker prospects both go to programs where they have an opportunity to play from the get-go.
Best Chance to Make 2009 Fantasy Impact
Dustin Hopkins (Florida State)
Rivals rank: No. 1 Kicker
Also had offers from: Notre Dame, Missouri, Kansas State
The scoop: Graham Gano graduates and Hopkins could step right in.
Anthony Fera (Penn State)
Rivals rank: No. 2 Kicker
Also had offers from: Michigan, Ohio State, Kansas State
The scoop: Kevin Kelly, PSU’s all-time leading scorer, graduates. Fera will challenge for the starting job the moment he steps on campus.
Todd DeVries is the founder of CollegeFootballGeek.com, your premier resource for college fantasy football information. Check us out.
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