In my Prediction Thursday post I called out Andre Anderson a little- and last year's breakout Green Wave player is definitely struggling this year.
Folks on another site have pointed out the indifferent offensive line and quarterback play as an excuse- but I am not sold. I’m agnostic as to whether this year’s offensive line is worse than last year’s version- could be with Troy Kropog gone. I'm even more agnostic about the quarterback play. But either way (better or worse), there ain’t that much difference in the line and quarterback play from the previous year- and Andre was super last season, despite being being the player keyed on.
Once he became a thirty touch guy last year (starting w/ ECU), Andre was a monster: 157 versus UL-M, 219 versus SMU, 107 versus Army, 255 versus UTEP. He averaged an amazing 5.0 yards a pop.
Where is that guy? Take away his 199 yards versus I-AA opposition- and it is ugly.
Last year he was 174 carries for 864 yards against I-A teams. This year he is 143 for 579- a whole yard less. That is really is incredible if you know the stats of football. Off the top of my head, I can’t think of any uninjured college player with his workload who declined a full yard over his previous season.
Worse, last year in six full games against I-A teams, he had thirty carries four times- and over 20 once. This year, against EIGHT I-A teams, he has NEVER carried thirty times, and only gotten twenty plus once. That is a staggering workload decline: 17 carries versus Army? 18 versus Marshall?, 11(!!!) versus LSU.
You can dismiss the yards with offensive line and quarterback protestations- but that does not excuse his declining number of touches- like 12-15 fewer per game.