Will second-year starters break out at wide receiver?
Evaluating wide receivers is tough given how dependent they are on other players, especially quarterbacks. Thus, trying to judge what Fouonji and Bradley gave the Texas Tech football team last season is difficult.
However, both must take steps forward in 2023 as each will be a starter for the second-straight season (Fouonji was a pseudo-starter last season anyway). Can they each break out and give Kittley a full season of dependability and production rather than just glimpses, which is what they showed last fall?
Bradley led Tech in catches (51), yards (744), and TD catches (6) last year as a redshirt freshman. He had three 100-yard games including a dominant 173-yard outburst against OU that saw him find the endzone. In fact, in three of Tech’s final four games, he hauled in a TD catch. Thus, people believe his ascension to stardom is imminent.
Fouonji (like Bradley) was a 4-star recruit in high school but he’s been slower to come around, partially due to nagging injuries. Still, despite a shoulder problem that plagued him for most of 2022, he was able to catch 34 balls for 451 yards and 3 scores.
The Midland native is more of a deep threat (at least speed-wise) than Bradley (who can use his size to win contested balls deep downfield but who isn’t likely to run past anyone). But he has to become more consistent as he had just two 100-yard games a season ago, one in game one, and one in the bowl game.
Between those two outings, he had no game with more than the 61 yards he put up against OU in the regular-season finale. Thus, he has shown he has the talent. But does he have the ability to put it all together on a weekly basis?
Tech needs both of these second-year wide receivers to become consistent and dominant this year. Their talent and pedigrees suggest they should be more than capable of that. If they can, Kittley’s offense will put up astronomical numbers come September.