Purdue Boilermakers: Al-Terek McBurse Seeing Little Field Time

Eddie WaltersAnalyst IIOctober 25, 2010

ATM returning a kickoff for a touch down against Indiana University his freshamn year.
ATM returning a kickoff for a touch down against Indiana University his freshamn year.

Remember Al-Terek Mcburse? Mcburse was Purdue's only four star recruit in the 2009 class, rushing for over 4,400 yards and 34 touchdowns in his high school career, and topped it off by breaking the Central Florida single season rushing record.

The same guy who returned a kick against rival Indiana his Freshman year. The running back who had arguably Purdue's best run of the year, against Western Illinois when he rolled off a defender keeping his knees off the ground, got up and out ran ball to the house showing elite speed and agility.

When Ralph Bolden went down with a knee injury in the spring, all signs pointed to McBurse playing a significant roll in the Boilermaker offense, which has not been the case. McBurse has had his share of injuries, breaking his arm in the spring and also dealing with turf toe, but it's appeared the last few weeks that McBurse has been ready to roll. Coach Hope has not been giving ATM (Al-Terek McBurse) much of a chance, instead going with senior Dan Dierking and converted wide receiver back Keith Carlos.

Dierking has had success, but has not been so spectacular to justify not giving McBurse some meaningful carries early in the game with the offense often times needing a spark.

In this past weeks game against Ohio State with Dierking not playing due to injury Keith Carlos was given the start, but could not get anything going finishing the game with 19 yards on 9 carries. Had Carlos been any bit affective against Ohio State one might understand Coach Hope staying with him, but averaging just 1.8 yards per carry does not justify leaving Carlos in.

Why not give the true Sophomore some carries? Was McBurse going to come in the game and get Purdue back in it? No, probably not, but I have to think there is no way he nets only 18 yards if given nine carries.

The most carries McBurse has received in a game was five, back in September against Western Illinois. He showed what he can do when given the ball totaling 81 yards on those carries, with a 16.2 yard per catch average including the acrobatic touchdown run discussed earlier.

McBurse has been inserted on sporadic possessions, never staying on the field long enough to develop a rhythm and feel for the game any running back needs to be successful.

The Purdue offense needs to look at their personnel after the shut out loss to Ohio State last week, why not see if McBurse can help get the ball moving when the Boilermakers take on the Fighting Illini next week?