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Monday, November 19, 2018

Football

Four positions the Cougars must replace in 2018


Steven Dunbar was one of Houston’s best receivers last season, and it will be a tall task to replace the NFL caliber receiver. | Justin Tijerina/The Cougar

The college football season starts in less than two weeks, and the Cougars have had to replace many key players from last season.

Players graduated and many ended up in the NFL, but Houston should be ready to have continued success with new players.

Wide receiver

The Cougars’ two most productive receivers during the 2017 season, Linell Bonner and Steven Dunbar, graduated and moved on to the NFL.

The two combined for 156 receptions in the season and nearly 2000 yards.

Juniors Courtney Lark and Keith Corbin are the most prolific of the remaining receivers and should be aided by three-star recruit Ja’Kori Morgan.

Morgan is one of the tallest players on the roster at 6’2″, which means he should be able to contest a lot of balls that are thrown too high or wide for other receivers.

Running back

Perhaps the most surprising loss from the 2017 team was star running back Duke Catalon.

Last year, the junior gained over 600 yards on the ground and earned eight touchdowns before leaving the team for personal reasons in the offseason.

The probable starters will be junior Mulbah Car, who earned 388 yards and three touchdowns last season, and Terence Williams, who transferred in from Baylor. 

Kelan Walker, the No. 39 running back in the class of 2018, could also be a success for the Cougars on the ground.

Secondary

While UH lost veteran safeties Terrell Williams and Khalil Williams to graduation, the air defense could still be a huge success.

Senior Garrett Davis will look to use his prolific 2017 season, where he recorded 38 tackles and four interceptions, to fuel the Cougars.

At cornerback, Jeremy Winchester left the team but senior Alexander Myres will be the Cougars’ leader in this position alongside Notre Dame graduate transfer Nick Watkins.

Watkins had 22 tackles and one interception last season with the Fighting Irish while Myres had 42 tackles and an interception.

Line backer

While Ed Oliver is the face of the defense, his supporting cast will be crucial to the Cougars’ success.

D’Juan Hines and Matthew Adams, who combined accounted for over 100 tackles and 13 tackles for loss, are both gone.

The leader for UH at the linebacker position will most likely be senior Emeke Egbule, who had 62 tackles and two sacks during the 2017 campaign. Helping him should be junior Leroy Godfrey, who had 33 tackles of his own.

Overall, the team has a lot on its plate, but with a full off season of training, the team should be able to incorporate and improve all the players.

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