45 days to football: Who's your pick for breakout player?

Gabe Marks' face FTW - William Mancebo

WSU has some established talent, but who do you think will rise up and have a breakout season?

Every year people write hundreds of thousands of words previewing the college football season and every year players exceed expectations to have "breakout seasons." I'm not entirely sure what constitutes a breakout season, but we're going to predict some anyway!

As a general rule, I would consider a breakout season to be a year where a player not only tops any previous stats by a wide margin, but also outperforms any expectations. Gabe Marks having a big season next year wouldn't be a breakout year, everyone expects Marks to be good.

My initial inclination is to go with a wide receiver for my pick, specifically Kristoff Williams. But, I've gone down that path before and predicting wide receivers in this offense is futile. Could Williams be good? Absolutely. But, he'll also be fighting Dominique Williams and Vince Mayle for snaps.

Instead, I'm going to go with a running back. That may sound crazy considering how bad WSU's running game was last year, but I think Teondray Caldwell could be in for a "breakout" year. WSU had the worst rushing offense in the country last season, but it wasn't because of Caldwell. He averaged 4.8 yards per carry as a freshman, compared to the 3.4 yards per carry WSU's other running back averaged.

Caldwell was just on a different level than the other backs. He's fast, shifty but also showed the ability to break a tackle and gain yards after contact, a huge bonus when the first defender often hit him in the backfield. The only thing holding Caldwell back is his ability to stay on the field. It seemed last season, any good run was followed shortly by him limping off the field.

Carl Winston is gone, the offensive line should be better (it can't be much worse) and Caldwell should have plenty of opportunity to shine.

He's my pick, who's yours?

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