The Miami of Ohio Redhawks (1-1 overall) had a tough test in the beginning of the season against then No. 18 Ohio State, but came away with a 30-14 win against Southern Illinois last weekend. While it seems that the odds might not be in their favor this upcoming Saturday at Bronco Stadium, there are a few Redhawk standouts who will prove to be an issue for Boise State.
Senior quarterback Zac Dysert
Praised by the likes of Boise State Head Coach Chris Petersen, Dysert has asserted himself as a game manager, but that hasn’t always been the case, especially against Boise State. Back in 2009, Dysert struggled in Bronco Stadium, going 2-4 with a single passing yard and two interceptions in a 48-0 loss to the Broncos. Then a true freshman, Dysert now enters his senior year with more confidence and game experience. Coming off a career year last season throwing for over 3500 yards with 23 touchdowns and only 11 interceptions, Dysert seems to continue on that pace. Granted the Redhawks had to deal with a tough Buckeyes team, Dysert is currently 59-of-89 with 529 yards coupled with two touchdowns and two interceptions.
Senior wide receiver Andy Cruse
Cruse provides an intriguing threat for the Redhawks against the Broncos. The senior receiver may not lead the team in receiving yards or touchdowns, but Cruse as an overwhelming 20 receptions in two games, proving that he is a favorite target of Dysert’s. Cruse’s size, 6 foot 4 inches and 214 pounds, gives him an advantage over small corners and offers a solid body for down field passing threats. Cruse was able to grab eight receptions against Ohio State and a career high 12 against Southern Illinois. While the Bronco secondary asserted themselves as one of the more dominant corps for the Broncos against Michigan State, the defensive backs should still be weary of Cruse’s catching abilities.
Senior lineback Pat Hinkel
Making the transition from strong safety to linebacker this season, Hinkel seems to have a pretty good grasp at the position. Leading the team with 18 total tackles and two interceptions, Hinkel’s big-bodied presence (6 foot 1, 205 pounds) could translate as a defensive problem for the Bronco passing game. Hinkel plays a confident game, understanding different passing packages and a great tackler. Even though the two interceptions came from Southern Illinois, Hinkel still rattled Ohio State’s Braxton Miller a bit and will be a nuisance for Boise State’s Joe Southwick. Do not be surprised to hear Hinkel’s name over the loud speaker consistently when tackles are made.