There is a saying used by wise business people: numbers never lie. The same theory holds true on the gridiron.
South Bend, Washington wide receiver Gehrig Dieter got down to business on Saturday night, breaking a state single-game receiving record with 373 yards receiving on eight catches and adding five touchdowns. To put that number into perspective, it ranks tied for eighth nationally on the all-time single-game receiving list. The single game record is 421 yards set in 2008 by J.D. Felice (Rose Bud, AZ.).
Dieter's yardage was a combination of laser-beam darts from Washington quarterback Daigien Morgan and soft-touch precision passes. Dieter's 88 yard romp was on a three-yard slant pass with 85 of those yards coming after initial contact.
Washington is in an enviable position, as head coach Antwan Jones can be confident with his ground attack as well. Running back David Perkins (Notre Dame verbal) rushed for 126 yards and two scores. On Washington's first offensive play, Perkins plowed his way for an 85-yard score.
Dieter was locked in from warm ups and didn't take a play off until the game was out of reach. So the numbers put together by Dieter were for three quarters. He sat out the fourth with the game out of reach. While playing corner on defense, lining up to return punts and even being used as punter once, Dieter left it all on the field from whistle to whistle on a hot muggy night.
Morgan and Dieter had their timing down, connecting on scores from 88, 80, 67, 47 and 44 yards. This speaks volumes for Morgan, as Dieter has been working out with Auburn verbal Zeke Pike this summer.
At 6'3" inches and 215 pounds, Dieter punished would-be tacklers en route to his five scores on more than one occasion. He also showed a combination of finesse and athleticism when he went up over two defenders and ripped the ball out of the air at the height of his extension for a 47-yard touchdown. Much has been made about Dieter's vise grip like hands, and this play was an example of the the raw strength. At one point, Dieter and the two defenders all had a hand on the ball, with Dieter winning the battle.
With offers from virtually all of the MAC and Auburn, Wisconsin and Northwestern showing interest, it's only a matter of time before someone makes a move.
As this article is going to press, SMU has just offered Dieter.
While the film of this game will show all the highlights, it won't show the hustle that Gehrig Dieter displayed from warm ups until he saw his final snap of the evening. It won't show the leadership qualities that he displayed or the encouragement that he offered to the second unit. Film won't show Dieter telling the officials good luck during warm ups either.
What the film will tell is 373 yards on eight catches and five touchdowns. And numbers never lie.