We've already hit several "pockets" on our countdown already. There was the "D-line pocket" that we hit during the 90s and the "Tight End pocket" we hit during the high to mid 80s. Well, don't look now, because we might have just hit the "Dutch pocket".
There are 82 days until kickoff ... so today we'll be taking a look at number 82 on the Bronco roster—Geraldo Hiwat
#82, Geraldo Hiwat, Sophomore, WR
Weight: 200 lbs.
High School: Capital High School, Boise, ID
How'd he get to The Blue?
Hiwat definitely had one of the more interesting journeys to the Blue. Born and raised in the Netherlands, the lanky speedster only came to the U.S. as an exchange student his senior year, where he subsequently played his one and only year of American football. What a year it was. Despite having his season cut short by injury, Hiwat was named first-team All-SIC and second-team All-State after catching 41 passes for 502 yards and 5 scores, rushing 3 times for 51 yards and a TD, returning 8 kickoffs for 303 yards and a score, and returning six punts for 107 yards and a TD. The Broncos extended Hiwat his only scholarship offer (that we know of), which he graciously accepted. Hiwat redshirted in 2009.
The Flying Dutchman [flahy-ing duhch-muhn]
This nickname isn't just a cutesy coincidence...Hiwat won the state title in the long jump and 200m in 2009. Plus, This pun is bound to appear in print once or twice this season. Believe it.
Getting a scholly after one year of American ball has to be high on the list. Got playing time in 9 games in 2010. Had 3 catches for 75 yards against Hawaii, but then again, who didn't have a big receiving game against Hawaii?
Injury shortening lone season of football at Capital.
No sophomore receiver in Boise State history will likely endure the kind of scrutiny that Hiwat is bound to...er...receive in 2011. When you're putting on the "deep threat", "go-to", and "big play" hats as a relatively inexperienced soph and replacing a Bronco legend—thems just the breaks. Whether Hiwat will embrace the challenge of being the star receiver on an offense ran by a Heisman-finalist, obviously remains to be seen—but it will go a long way in determining just how successful the Bronco passing game will be in 2011.
As I discussed yesterday when I highlighted receiver Troy Ware, the Broncos won't be suffering any lack of depth at the so-called skill positions, but they will be dealing with a significant loss of experience—especially the "big game" variety. The Broncos have a very big game right out of the gate this season and Hiwat, probably more than anyone else will be asked to step up and produce. The lanky Dutchman possesses a skill set that we've rarely seen in Boise—height and speed—but is also is one of the most inexperienced players on the roster. Experience is big in the college game, and I know I'd rest a lot easier at night knowing that this year's star receiver had more than 11 career receptions under his belt...or even more than a few years of football. That said, I don't think it's much of a stretch to suggest that Hiwat, with his physical gifts, can be a dominant player...especially in a Kellen Moore-led offense. I just wish the gulf between "can be" and "will be" wasn't so massive.
I'm not big on Eastern mysticism, but I'm going to choose to believe that Hiwat will be a dominant player for the Broncos this year. If enough of you believe along with me, just maybe we can will it into reality.
Completely made up fact
To pay homage to his homeland, Hiwat has been tinkering with a touchdown celebration known as "the windmill". Brace yourselves for penalties.