Preview 2019: Previewing and looking ahead to the Memphis Tigers season with what you need to know.
2018 Record: 8-6 overall, 5-3 in American Athletic
Head Coach: Mike Norvell, 4th year, 26-14
5. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE MEMPHIS OFFENSE
– Is it all about the system? Memphis has been fun and exciting under head coach Mike Norvell with an O that puts up numbers in bunches. It led the AAC and finished fourth in the nation averaging 523 yards per game, and was seventh in the country in scoring averaging 43 points per pop. There’s enough there to be great again, but …
– Two of the three star running backs are gone. Darrell Henderson left early after averaging close to nine yards per carry with 1,909 yards and 22 scores, and do-it-all star Tony Pollard is done, too. However, 6-3, 233-pound Patrick Taylor is back after running for 1,122 yards and 16 scores as the new star of the show. Now the depth has to fill in, starting with redshirt freshman Kenny Gianwell and sophomore Timothy Taylor to add some options.
– Brady White was hardly along for the ride, The 6-3, 205-pound former Arizona State Sun Devil was a perfect quarterback fit for the attack, completing 63% of his throws for 3,296 yards and 26 scores with nine picks. He’s not much of a runner, but he’s accurate, doesn’t make a ton of mistakes, and he keeps the chains moving. Redshirt freshman Brady McBride adds more of a rushing element to go along with his efficient passing skills.
– The running backs are the stars in the offense, but the receivers are there, too, starting with 72-catch, 1,174-yard, seven score all-star Damonte Coxie. The 6-3, 200-pound junior is the No. 1 guy, and Joey Magnifico is a special tight end averaging over 17 yards per catch with five scores. Pop Williams is a smallish short range receiver coming off a 33-catch season, and the running backs all get involved.
– Just enough talent returns up front to make it all go. The Tiger line might not blast away with a ton of power, but it’s great at opening holes for the home run hitters to fly through, and it’s great at keeping White upright.
6-2, 285-pound senior Dustin Woodard can work at either guard or center. He’s the star of the front, but both tackles are done, hurt mostly by the loss of Trevon Tate on the left side. There isn’t a ton of size up front, but the group can move.