Today is our final position preview on the offensive side of the ball before we move on to the specialists and defense. Be sure to go back and check out all of our previous previews if you have missed any. We’ve already taken a look at the quarterbacks, running backs, offensive line, and tight ends.
Our position previews roll on as we look at the wide receivers today. At every other position on Liberty’s offense, the Flames have a wealth of experience and talented returners coming back from the explosive 2020 unit. So much so that when looking at the team’s wide receivers, it’s easy to think it is a weakness.
Liberty’s receivers unit may be the weakest point of the offense, but that doesn’t mean it’s a weakness, necessarily. The Flames return its top three receivers and nine of its top 10 from the 2020 campaign. Liberty is stocked with slot guys and receivers that aren’t your typical big body, outside guy. There are a couple of guys who have the potential to step up and be that guy, and the Flames are hoping that is the case for 2021.
“DJ (Stubbs), Demario (Douglas) have been having a really good camp for us,” wide receivers coach Maurice Harris said. “We’ve got to get some depth on the outside, someone to help Noah Frith out, someone to help CJ Daniels and those guys out. We are creating that depth. We’re excited where things are right now.”
X WR 81 Noah Frith R-SO 6’4″ 195
Frith is the first guy that will get the opportunity to be that big, outside receiver for the Flames. He has the size and he has the ability. Last season, Frith played in just six games as he battled through injuries. He finished with 16 receptions for 211 yards and two touchdowns. He missed the first four games of the 2019 season due to injuries before finishing with 15 catches for 291 yards and three scores. Midway through camp, Frith is healthy and hoping for a breakthrough 2021 campaign.
H WR 5 DJ Stubbs SR 5’9″ 185
Stubbs is back for his super senior season, his fifth in a Liberty uniform. To say he is experienced is quite the understatement as he has played in 45 games in his career. He led the team in receiving last year with 38 receptions and 523 yards to go along with three touchdowns.
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “With his speed and quickness, if you can get him the ball in space, he can make one guy miss. The first guy rarely tackles DJ. He has a high football IQ. He understands big pictures. No matter where you put him he can function.”
Z WR 2 Kevin Shaa R-SR 5’11” 165
Entering the 2020 season, Shaa was counted out by many, but he proved his doubters wrong. He started nine games and played in all 11 last year, while finishing with 25 receptions for 450 yards and a team leading four touchdowns. He’s also a super senior and entering his fourth year at Liberty after transferring in from City College of San Francisco. Shaa is one of the fastest players on the team, and his versatility has allowed the coaching staff to move him to the outside even though his more natural position is in the slot.
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “He does a really good job at the line of scrimmage using his technique to get off jams and then once he gets behind those guys he can extend the play for us. He, like DJ, like Demario, you can plug him anywhere and he can function because they have an understanding of the concepts of what we’re trying to get accomplished. We’re excited about Kevin and what he can bring to our team.”
X WR 6 Jaivian Lofton JR 6’2″ 205
Lofton was expected to come in last year and help ease the loss of Antonio Gandy-Golden on the outside, but like Frith and CJ Yarbrough, he was also hampered by injuries and only played in five games. Lofton had just three receptions for 51 yards in 2020. If he is able to remain healthy this season, Lofton will have a much greater impact on the field.
H WR 3 Demario Douglas R-FR 5’8″ 165
Douglas is one of the most explosive players on the football team. Anytime he touches the ball he is a threat to score, whether that is as a receiver or in the return game. He’s entering his third season with the program, but is still classified as a redshirt-freshman thanks to the COVID shirt rules from 2020. Douglas finished last season with the second most receptions on the team with 32 to go along with 363 yards and three scores.
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “Elijah Moore and Demario remind me a lot of each other. Not just with the skill set, but the mentality. Elijah came in as a freshman with a workman’s type mentality and wanted to get more reps. Demario is super fast, but every time we run a 40 around here, he is hampered with something. So, I don’t know how fast he is, I just know guys can’t run with him.”
Z WR 4 CJ Daniels R-FR 6’1″ 195
Daniels surprised everyone as a true freshman last year and became a steady force for the Flames’ offense. Also pushed to the outside by necessity, Daniels played in all 11 games and started two in 2020, finishing with 11 receptions for 220 yards and three scores. Expect to see his snap count to continue to increase.
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris- “When we go 12 personnel and we have a bigger slot in there, we can usually put CJ inside. He has the skill set to play inside or outside for us, but right now we need CJ outside.”
WR 14 Stetson Moore R-SO 6’4″ 230
Moore joins the program after transferring in from Pearl River Community College. He has split some of his time on campus between the tight end and the wide receiver group as he has a similar skillset to that of Johnny Huntley, but Freeze has said that Moore will spend the 2021 season at receiver. He’s the biggest guy at the position and could carve out a specific role as he continues to learn the offense.
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “He’s going to be a guy that’s going to be in the mix when we play on September 4. Being able to lean on DBs, use his big body on a consistent basis, that’s what he’s learning to do right now. He’s starting to learn how to use his body to create space for himself.”
WR 18 Ahmad Jackson FR 6’1″ 210
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “Ahmad is still developing. He has to grasp what we’re doing so he can play fast. Right now, he’s doing a lot of thinking out there as opposed to getting the signal, hurrying and getting lined up, and performing at a high level. He’s thinking too much right now.”
WR 80 Kylen Austin FR 6’1″ 175
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “Kylen is going to be a good player for us. He’s just slight right now. When he first got here, he was like 149 I think. Right now, he’s up to 170-something. He’s going to be a phenomenal player for us. Unfortunately, right now, he’s just behind Demario and DJ, but he’s a quick learner. He’s a student of the game and he wants to please. He comes out every single day and works hard.”
WR 19 Brody Brumm R-JR 6’1″ 200
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “Brody Brumm is very steady in what he does for our team on the field and off the field.”
WR 21 Treon Sibley R-FR 6’1″ 210
Wide receivers coach Maurice Harris – “Treon Sibley is having a phenomenal camp. He is progressing for us. We’re excited to see what he’s going to do for us this season for sure.”
WR 17 Khaleb Coleman R-JR 6’2″ 215
Coleman has fought through lingering injuries throughout much of his collegiate career, and he is currently fighting back from knee surgery.