What a difference a year can make.
Miami University's David Frazier came into this past season on the heals of the best year of his collegiate career. It also happened to be his team's worst. Two touchdowns and 302 receiving yards was all the junior could muster in the face of a winless 2013 campaign and he, like the rest of his teammates, had something to prove. And so Frazier decimated those totals in his first four 2014 outings.
In 11 starts and 12 games, the Columbia, South Carolina native racked up 949 yards on 59 receptions, scoring five touchdowns in the process. A spot on the Biletnikoff watch list and Second Team All-MAC honors followed, and he was even named by his team as offensive MVP. Despite a breakout performance in the waning moments of his career, not much stock has been placed in the 6-foot-0, 180-pound man.
The NFL Draft will likely pass him by.
It's tough to blame professional teams for the oversight, really. He's not especially tall and, while weight can be gained, it can mess with his speed. His statistical presence isn't especially heavy, either. Prior to his career-best effort at Cincinnati, when he exploded for 162 yards and two touchdowns, he had only ever managed 79 yards and six points versus Akron. A few big games can happen to just about anyone in any year, it's understandable being hesitant to buy into Mr. Frazier. To the naysayers that say he doesn't stand a chance at the next level, however, one need only apply the good ol' college football playoff "eye test."
Two games this year provided ample evidence of Frazier's speed and strength. In a revamped, Chuck Martin offense helmed by transfer Andrew Hendrix, Miami's passing game flourished and Frazier was the biggest beneficiary (it also helped his cause that fellow receiver Dawan Scott handled much of the running duties for the RedHawks). The aforementioned Cincinnati contest was a huge boost to Frazier's profile, but it was the first two games against Marshall and Eastern Kentucky that saw No. 9 come into his own. Though neither outing yielded a score, both were 100-yard efforts that established Frazier as a go-to target with sure hands and deep-threat potential. Week seven in Akron was a 132-yard affair and his second two-touchdown effort. Though he failed to reach the 100-yard mark again for the rest of the year and he fell just shy of 1000 yards on he season, Frazier had proven himself one of the leagues top receivers.
Will this translate into a pro career? It's hard to tell. The odds are stacked against the undersized product of Oxford, Ohio. No real interest has been shown by a professional team, though Frazier could potentially wind up an undrafted free agent. For now, it looks like an NFL practice squad is on the horizon for the breakout receiver. He'll have an uphill battle, but Frazier's work ethic will serve him well as he attempts to make a name for himself at the next level.