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D’Eriq King: College Football’s Underappreciated Star

D’Eriq King’s plays like a college football superstar. Let’s start treating him like one.

Electrifying runner. Cannon for an arm. Game-changing speed. Heisman-worthy potential. Most overlooked player in college football. All of these things describe D’Eriq King. Whether its on national level or on his own team, King is taken for granted. Now that he’s healthy entering his senior year, it’s time we admire his unique combination of skills and give him the respect he deserves.

Not many teams found a way to stop the Cougars offense in 2018, even if they could slow King down. While a suspect defense of their own struggled, Houston’s offense kept carving up opposing defenses. There wasn’t much that could stop them. King returns as one of the best quarterbacks in all of college football, and it’s time that his play gets the recognition it deserves.

An awkward fall led to a tweak of his right knee and King’s absence for the remainder of 2018. Now that he’s nearly back to 100%, it’s time to pick up where he left off. Opposing defenses beware, D’Eriq King’s back and better than ever.

How do you improve on a season when you scored 50 touchdowns? For King, it means staying healthy the entire year. He scored 50 touchdowns and accumulated 3,656 total yards in essentially 10.5 games last year. That put him on pace for over 4,500 total yards and nearly 62 touchdowns if he played in 13 games. Health plays a big role (obviously) in a players success, and King just needs to stay on the field to put up even bigger numbers in 2019.

To put King’s potential numbers in perspective, Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray played in 14 games last year which resulted in 5,362 total yards and 54 touchdowns. Yet King was rarely in the discussion for best quarterback.

Only three players were responsible for 50 or more touchdowns last year. Murray, Dwayne Haskins and King. Analysts gushed over the first two, but rarely talked about the third. To get that respect this year, he must compete with the likes of Tua Tagovailoa and Trevor Lawrence. Not only must he work to garner national respect, he must do so in his conference and on his own team too.

It seemed that analysts found any reason to ignore King’s play last year. That couldn’t be more evident against Tulane on November 15th. Houston lost its most valuable player on offense, but Ed Oliver’s “Jacketgate” stole the spotlight. Not the man responsible for 50 touchdowns getting hurt. Not the importance of his role in the offense. A jacket. Adding insult to injury, King didn’t even win AAC Offensive Player of the Year despite having the best stats in the conference. There’s plenty of motivation for King this year, and it’s finally time for the spotlight to shine bright on him.

D’Eriq King’s potential is through the roof, and we get to watch him one final season as a Houston Cougar. There’s not another quarterback in the AAC that’s close to as good as him, and there aren’t many on his level in the country. A cannon for an arm, and the running ability of an elite running back, King’s arsenal is unlike any other quarterback in the country. Eclipsing his 2018 statistics should reflect that, and it’s time for college football to give him the love he deserves.

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