Hopes for Dak Prescott have been high among Bulldog fans since he showed himself to be the best fit in Dan Mullen's offense in 2013. After coming in late in last year's Egg Bowl and leading State to a gutsy overtime win, you could tell there was something special about the guy.
In seven starts in 2013 Prescott completed 156 of 267 passes for 10 touchdowns and ran for a team high 829 yards on 134 carries for 13 scores. He even caught two touchdown passes. He has potential to be one of the most lethal dual-threat quarterbacks in the whole country. Just this past week he was named to the Maxwell Award Watch List.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves.
Prescott was injured for a sizable chunk of the 2013 season, and if State's fearless leader goes down again in 2014, the remaining options are limited.
Tyler Russell has graduated leaving sophomore Damian Williams to be Prescott's primary replacement. While Williams received valuable experience in six games as a true freshman after Prescott and Russell both went down with injuries, he still needs to grow as a quarterback.
In his six games, Williams completed 23 of 47 passes for 279 yards and rushed for 112 yards on 37 carries with only one touchdown (albeit, that TD was the game winner against Arkansas). Not eye-popping numbers, but if he is needed he could be a decent replacement. And after Williams there are a couple of true freshmen on the roster but let's just hope it doesn't come to that again.
Thus, the key for MSU's offense in the coming season will be avoiding injuries. Constantly changing quarterbacks due to injury throughout 2013 hurt the Bulldogs offense and they could never really find consistency on that side of the ball. Prescott must stay healthy and if he does, the Bulldogs offensive attack could be a real force in 2014.
But again, let's not get ahead of ourselves too much here.
Even though MSU's offense could potentially be the best that we've seen in years, football is a truly unpredictable sport. And hype is just that... hype, and nothing more. Hype can't win a Heisman trophy.
Hopefully Dak does exceed expectations and lead State to an exceptional season but let's look at this more realistically. That's all I'm asking. The success of the Bulldog's offense truly hinges on keeping Dak Prescott healthy and getting him to play to his full potential. If those two things can be accomplished, there's no doubt that wins and awards will follow. So let' s just worry about keeping Dak on the field before we start worrying about his Heisman trophy chances.