Wonderful Wednesday's 'Hot Spot': New Mexico State's Rogers blazing a path
September 21st, 2011 By Corey Chavous
New Mexico State wide receiver Taveon Rogers (#1 pictured) may be under the radar, but opposing teams have their hamstrings greased when facing one of the WAC's most explosive weapons.
Last season, wide receiver Taveon Rogers was simply trying to get his feet wet in his first year on campus as an Aggie. He definitely made an impact as a kick returner (27.1 yds/KR), but the transition took some time at the wide receiver position. The junior college transfer bided his time in regular packages and seized the opportunity on returns. His return philosophy has always been simple.
“I just look for a seam,” Rogers said. “I look for perfection and the opportunity to make a play.”
A late season emergence included two 90-yard plus receiving games and a game-winning dramatic touchdown catch vs. San Jose State. The 6-foot, 188-pound senior didn’t come into this season with low expectations after catching just 18 passes in 2010, particularly after an eye-catching 2011 spring performance.
“I’m just an explosive player and I think they (NM State coaches) expect that from me every time I touch the ball,” Rogers stated. “And I expect that from myself.”
Expectations will continue to rise after Rogers’ strong opening statement in the season’s first three games. He is just 29 yards away from bettering last year’s total of 278, and he has already notched 4 touchdown receptions, including a career-high two TD grabs in a Week 2 upset of Minnesota on the road.
New Mexico State head coach DeWayne Walker is certainly not surprised.
“Anytime you run 10.3/100-meters,” Walker explained. “Hopefully that will put fright into a lot of defenses.”
Rogers’ 10.3 speed notwithstanding, it’s also his body control and precise footwork that make him a threat anytime he gets the ball in his hands. Aside from averaging 17.8 yds/catch, he also leads he WAC and ranks 10th nationally with a 31.8 yd/KR average.
The former Golden League (Lancaster, Calif. native) 100-meter and 200-meter track champion has already taken one kick back to the house and he leads the WAC in touchdown receptions. Rogers is tied for second in the conference at 10 points/game.
And ‘back’ could be the operative term when opposing teams prepare to take on the WAC speedster in the weeks to come. His speed should force defensive coordinators to instruct their cornerbacks to do one thing when one-on-one with Rogers.
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