It's almost Fourth of July Weekend, you guys! Have you purchased things that shouldn't be used by someone other than a licensed explosiveologist? No?
Well, what the hell kind of American are you, anyway? Leave you computer right now and go buy something that'll likely liberate a finger or two from your left hand. If you don't, the terrorists win or it'll snow bloodflakes, or there's no Christmas or something. I forget the exact consequences.
PLAYER: Macky MacPherson (Codename: "Macnificent")
HOMETOWN: Syracuse, NY
HIGH SCHOOL: Christian Brothers Academy
2010 STATS: MacPherson kept Syracuse's kicking game in business last year, firing lasers into the backfield for field goal and point after attempts. In total, he knocked heads in 12 of the Orange's 13 games in 2010.
He also made the Dr. Daryl Gross Honor Roll of Honor for Excellence in the Field of Academic Honor both semesters last year. What a nerd.
2011 PROJECTIONS: At worst, MacPherson will serve as the long snapper again in 2011.
At best, the cat is going to be patrolling the line as Syracuse's starting center. Coach Marrone's post-spring depth chart shows Macky as the team's first-choice center, but as MacPherson isn't exactly built like a guy that could bench press and leverage a Volkswagen, Ian Allport or Nick Lepak could get a shot at the job if MacPherson falters.
The worst thing you can say about Macky is that he's never going to be 6'4" or 300 lbs, but that doesn't mean he can't be an effective lineman at this level. Macky made up for what he lacks in size, with his consistency snapping the ball, and his great mobility, which gives our coaches a lot of options when running the ball. Most teams can't pull their centers, but we will see that, and it's a very useful tool. Macky does an excellent job of getting to the second level, and taking on linebackers and defensive backs. He may struggle against big nose guards, but our zone blocking scheme is going to largely center on giving Macky help when he needs it, and I think he's going to quell a lot of fans' worries with his play this year. Also, hello again Shotgun formation.
So, let's wait and see what happens. I remain, as always: 1) cautiously optimistic; and 2) likely filled with chicken wings.
HOW'D HE GET HERE: His grand pappy used to work at Syracuse, in case you didn't know. Also, Andy Rautins is Leo Rautins' son!
"Deep in my heart, I knew I wanted to go to Syracuse. Syracuse has pretty much been my whole life. I was a ball boy when Coach Paul Pasqualoni was here. I got to see everything and how it worked. I fell in love with the place."
Harvard, Boston College, and Princeton all showed interest in Macky, but those schools are for loserfaces.
WHAT DID SCOUT/RIVALS SAY?: Scout had MacPherson as a two-star cat; Rivals copied off of Scout's homework and also gave MacPherson a double star salute.
MONEY QUOTE: What was that stuff about Allport or Lepak apparently stealing MacPherson's thunder? It's all rubbish to Macky:
"I never feel nervous. I feel like I've got a good handle on the playbook."
* * * * *
"For me, it's about technique and speed -- using my mind instead of my size," MacPherson said. "Obviously, I'm not the biggest offensive lineman around. But whatever I lack in size, I make up for in toughness or quickness."
The key to shanking a nose tackle is being tough and getting that shiv into his kidney as quickly as possible. I think he's going to be just fine.
INTERESTING NUGGET O' INTEREST: His non-alliterative name is Richard Astralaga MacPherson. His middle name is not in the top 1,000 male names for any year of birth in the last 100 years. He is a very special flower.
WHAT DOES MARRONE THINK?: Marrone is terrific and such, but when I want opinion about football players, I'd rather get that information from a coach that has a mustache (Wannstedt excluded). TELL ME WHAT TO THINK ABOUT MACKY MACPHERSON, GREG ADKINS:
"From everything it takes for that center position – from communication skills, to knowledge of the offense – [MacPherson's] stepped right in," Adkins said.
Praise Jesus! I've been mustache-knowledged!
HUMAN INTEREST STORIES AS FOOTBALL THEORY: CitrusTV gives you insight into the life of Macky, with proud commentary from his Pop-pop: