In 2009, with the season ending injury of Rob Gronkowski and the absence of Delashaun Dean due to a hamstring injury, Juron Criner broke out as the favorite target of Nick Foles and became the Wildcats top pass catcher.
Fast-forward to 2010.
The possible return of Gronkowski was thwarted by the NFL, Dean’s issues off the field became so bad that he was kicked off the team, and the Wildcats second best receiver, Terrell Turner, graduated.
With Arizona’s high reliance on the passing game, who will emerge as the 2010 version of Juron Criner?
A convincing pick would be David Roberts, the redshirt junior who roped in 12 catches in a losing effort against the Huskies in Seattle last year, and one of three Arizona receivers to amass over 400 yards during the 2009 campaign. David Douglas would also be a safe pick, a quick and shifty receiver who can be very dangerous with the ball in his hands.
Are these two receivers possible breakout stars? Sure, but the name everyone in Tucson should be paying attention to is Bug.
William “Bug” Wright, the 5’9” speedster from Tatums, Oklahoma should be on everyone’s radar but not just because of his dangerous return game. Bug possesses top end speed which will add a legitimate deep threat to the Wildcats offense, something they have not seen since switching to the spread.
The redshirt junior, who was injured in the game at Iowa, ended up missing four games and was not able to bet back into rhythm until the end of the season. Bug’s two best games receiving-wise, came in the final three games of the season, including a standout 5 reception, 73 yard, one touchdown performance against the highly ranked Oregon Ducks.
The smallest of all the Wildcat receivers, Bug may not attract as much attention initially from opposing defenses, especially with the fact that no one really knows who the number two receiver is yet.
So with Criner as Foles’ only clear target, it’s up to Bug to show that he is more than a guy with incendiary speed and a cool nickname, but a potential breakout player for this Arizona team.