With the focus on Cam Newton, he rolled Auburn to a national title (see photo below), was dismissed for drug violations but followed Gus Malzahn to Arkansas State only to have a policeman caught trying to cover for the gun and marijuana in his car clocked at 96 mph. But the roller coaster may be going back up for Michael Dyer, who Sunday was in his third college uniform looking like he could lead a second team to the NCAA title (photo above).
Louisville’s Heisman Trophy candidate Teddy Bridgewater already had the game in control (see Breitbart Sports account of the 49-7 win over Ohio here
) before handing the ball to Michael Dyer on a simple run off left tackle. During his five-star high school career and two years at Auburn, Dyer showed the ability to run over numerous defenders on a given play, but on this run he waited to let blockers do their job.
Dyer picked his way through spots behind his lineman until he saw an opening. He burst through, and easily disregarded Ohio’s Xavier Hughes with a shove, bursting 46-yards for a touchdown.
Adding Dyer to a team that includes Bridgewater running the offense, and former Florida defensive master mind Charlie Strong running the defense could make for a national contender. Their toughest game of the year will be a trip to Cincinnati to face former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville, who destroyed Purdue Saturday and is 5-2 against Top 5 teams – which the Cardinals could well be by then.
Strike 1 – Dismissed from Auburn
Dyer knows he has two strikes, but the reports are he is now clean. He was unpopular with fellow students at Auburn despite his dominance on the field, as many students said he was arrogant and above the law. But oh did he have talent. He managed to avoid going down against Oregon in the final moments of the game – though Pac12 fans may argue his ankle in the photo above was down – and then scampered into field goal position to set up Auburn’s win as time expired.
That season he benefited from a veteran offensive line, one of the greatest quarterbacks in the history of the game in Newton, and fellow running back Onterio McCalebb. The threat of McCalebb, who ran the fastest NFL combine time this year at 4.27 and is now on the Bengals practice squad as a corner back, going wide let Dyer pound up the middle.
However, with the line and Newton gone the next year Dyer was even more impressive, muscling over defenders with almost no offensive line in front of him. Dyer single-handedly led a terrible Auburn team past South Carolina by carrying the ball 41 times for 141 yards to outduel Marcus Lattimore (17 carries for 66 yards).
However, at the end of the season he was dismissed when the staff suddenly learned he was in Arkansas without an excuse, and apparently having once again “violated team rules.” STRIKE 1.
Strike 2 – Dismissed from Arkansas State
Luckily for Dyer, he had a great second chance because Gus Malzahn, who had known him since high school, also left Auburn to take the Arkansas State head coaching job and offered Dyer a spot in his home state.
Rather than take advantage of the situation, Dyer was pulled over with his car moving at 96 mph and a gun and marijuana in the car. Police film of the officer who stopped him giving him tips on how to avoid the “NCAA crap” of being kicked off of another team would sink him there. STRIKE 2.
Even after getting clean, it looked like Dyer would end up at Troy or Western Kentucky. Then suddenly he received a Top 10 offer from Louisville.
Strike 3, or part of National Contender at Louisville?
Dyer showed again Sunday he is a home-run hitter. Dyer could be the insurance policy if a defense figures out either an all-out blitz or nickle defense to slow down Bridgewater one game this season. Dyer could find a crease, or run over the one guy left in the hole to keep the Cardinals undefeated at some point this season, just like he did when Oregon managed to slow Newton down to keep the national championship tied until late.
With Strong’s ability to shut down opposing teams, as he did to his old Florida team in Louisville’s Sugar Bowl blowout last year that was 33-10 until the last half of the 4th quarter, he may only need to prevent Dyer from striking out to have a legitimate shot at the title this season.