Dews proud of receivers

Garic Wharton

Wide receivers coach Tony Dews has been happy with the progress of his receivers. Read on for his thoughts on new scholarships, freshmen, and more.

Wide receivers coach Tony Dews has a more difficult job than originally expected with the injury to Austin Hill and loss of a few others.

However, he believes that the change in some of the personnel also gives the current guys an opportunity to make an impression.

"I would be if I was one of them in the positions that they were in," Dews said of his wide receivers' eagerness. "I would be very excited and eager to do what is right, play fast at full speed, because there is opportunity. In a perfect world, if we had seven or eight wide outs that could play every game that would be the perfect situation."

Dews has seen Johnny Jackson and Trevor Ermisch get scholarships, which is something that he admits makes him proud as their position coach.

"I am very happy for them and very proud of them," Dews said. "When these kids come out and do everything we ask and they pay their way, Coach Rodriguez likes to reward them. When a kid at your position gets a scholarship, you are very happy, but you are very proud of them. That's not easy to do. It's not easy to earn a scholarship, so when you earn a scholarship it is a really neat thing."

Dews has been impressed with a handful of receivers, but there is one in particular that could be ready for a breakout season.

"I am very excited for Garic Wharton," Dews said. "One thing Garic brings us besides experience is that he can run. Garic is a fast kid. We saw some flashes from Garic in games and as we got into conference, he made some plays against Washington, made some catches against UCLA and ASU and in the bowl game he had one of the biggest plays of the game when he caught that seam ball on third down.

"Garic has experience, he can run, and he is a pleasant kid to coach. I think he can help the young guys come along as well."

The veteran receivers are not the only ones impressing Dews, as he will have to rely on a handful of freshmen as well. One of those freshmen is Nate Phillips, who looks like he will make an immediate impact.

"Nate's doing a really good job right now," Dews said. "He is a quick kid, fast kid. The most impressive thing is his football intelligence. He has probably the least amount of missed assignments as everybody. He is very sharp and a serious kid that is very intense.

"He is very physical, short in stature, but he is a strong kid. He already broke the wide receiver bench record as a true freshman walking in here. The future, as long as he stays healthy, I think the future will be bright."

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