The punt return game has been abysmal for Purdue for about four years now. Since Aaron Valentin returned a punt for a score against Northern Illinois in 2009 Purdue has done virtually nothing. In fact, it has merely struggled to catch the ball at times. Today's featured player could change that.
B.J. Knauf - Fr. (RS)
Winter Haven, Florida (Santa Fe Catholic, HS)
5'10", 180 pounds
2013 Projection: Possible starter at punt returner
Remember Vinny Sutherland, a short, fast wide receiver on Joe Tiller's first Purdue team back in 1998? Knauf is cut from the same mold. He is blindingly fast after rushing for 1,769 yards and 27 touchdowns as a quarterback in high school. He was also a Florida state champion in the 100 meters with a time of 10.7 seconds and was runner-up in the 200. He sat out last season as a redshirt, but his speed could give him a spot this fall.
Offensively, he will play at receiver, where getting the ball to him in space should be a priority. Knauf has the speed to simply run away from anyone trying to tackle him. He is a player mentioned as being in the running as a punt returner, sot hat is where I expect to see him the most this fall.