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Dixon's Time To Shine: Second Chances Come Only Once

Daniel DinunzioAnalyst IAugust 28, 2009

EAST HARTFORD, CT - NOVEMBER 3:  Andre Dixon #2 of the University of Connecticut Huskies gains yardage against Devin McCourty #21 of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Rentschler Field November 3, 2007 in East Hartford, Connecticut.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Last year was one that Andre Dixon wish never happened.  The only problem is after an All Big East year in 2007, his performance fell off a cliff.  He suffered an ankle injury early on in the season, and fell behind first-round draft-pick Donald Problem.  After suffering through all that while dealing with legal problems, Dixon probably hopes 2009 is a return to the numbers he put up in 2007. 

Andre Dixon was suspended from the bowl game against Buffalo after a DUI arrest in December.  This was the ultimate low point of his collegiate problem. The DUI and a combination of lack of playing time and nagging injuries took him to rock bottom.  Randy Edsall is giving Dixon a second shot, and all indications through this offseason are that he's ready to be a force in the Huskies' backfield.

Dixon has everything you want in a running back.  He runs hard, fast, and has the agility to make defenders miss in the open field.  Besides being able to run hard at opposing defenses, he's a threat out of the backfield when it comes to catching passes.

His numbers from two years ago don't lie.  He carried the ball 167 times for 828 yards.  In addition to his five yards a carry average, he found the end zone rushing five times.  Receiving the ball out of the backfield he managed to have 24 receptions for 280 yards and one touchdown.

He's a dynamic weapon who, when healthy and focused, can be a challenge for some of the best defenses in the big east.  Dixon knows that this is his time to shine.  He's been put to the test by power running Jordan Todman, who made the most of his opportunity last year as a true freshman.

With Donald Brown gone and playing for the Colts, the Huskies need to find the yards of an All-American running back.  With the combination of Todman and Dixon running the show, UConn could potentially be just as powerful as last year.

New offensive coordinator Tom Moorhead has installed a gameplan that should improve the lackluster passing attack that the Huskies were hampered by last year.  If UConn is able to open up the playbook through the air, then the running game could become that much more dangerous.

Regardless of how the offense does on the pass, Dixon learned a lot about himself last year.  He knows what he has to do to go out and be successful.  He's done it in the past, and there's no doubt he has the talent to do it again.  His performance this year could be the answer, especially since NFL scouts will be watching closely. 

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