Ralph Bolden: 935 rushing yards, 261 receiving yards, 11 total touchdowns, and a torn ACL in a non-contact drill. Coming off of an unbelievable freshman campaign, Bolden was trying to solidify himself as one of the best backs in the Big Ten, as well as the nation. Here is to hoping a coming out party is about to unfold before our eyes similar to Matt Cassel had in New England (disregard the sophomore slump when he went to KC.) Enter Al-Terek McBurse.
McBurse was a highly touted 4-star recruit coming out of Winter Springs, FL. In high school, McBurse ran for 3,722 yards and 32 scores as a junior and senior. He has the explosive factor that led him to be Purdue’s top return man in 2009, earning National Kick Returner of the Week after his 87 yard return to the house against Indiana. All jokes of IU aside, McBurse has shown his potential and is the prime candidate to take over for the injured Bolden. With the promise of Marve and the passing game, pressure should be off of McBurse, giving him a great opportunity to just ease into the position and dominate teams early. Who knows, he can explode and carry momentum into Big Ten play and Bolden can return late and give us a two-headed monster that could strike fear into opposing defensive coordinators.
Optimism and patience is going to be the key for Boiler fans because nobody truly knows how the running game will look without the familiar faces of Ralph Bolden and Jaycen Taylor. Wishful thinking suggests McBurse wont McBust given his explosiveness and high school accolades, which is good given a new face at quarterback. September 4, 2010 may not have all the answers, but I’m hoping we see a party.