Sauce Gardner finally saw enough targets to show why he’s such a rare and special player for Cincinnati – The Athletic

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CINCINNATI – The question came from Wes G., in the comments section of my post a few weeks ago, about why Cincinnati cornerback Sauce Gardner is football’s most bored all-star player. university.

“I could be wrong, but is he the most dominant Bearcat in the history of the program? Wes asked.

This is a fair question and requires a thorough historical knowledge of the Bearcat program to answer it correctly. (I’ve never seen quarterback Greg Cook or defensive lineman Bob Bell play.) In recent memory, Mardy Gilyard’s impact, especially as a returner, stands out as a potential comparison, but it looks like Gardner’s role as the stop-limit cornerback – match in and play, play and play – is a little more resounding, especially in the era of modern college football.

Regardless of where Gardner stands in this debate, he is clearly on the shortlist, a reality made more impressive by the fact that he achieved it in large part thanks to a lack of raw stats and traceable production. . Gardner’s prowess is defined by his lack of presence, at least from the viewer’s perspective. Opposing quarterbacks know where he is and often react by avoiding him altogether, making Gardner something of a boogeyman on the pitch – a well-known and widely feared but rarely seen player.

It can also make him hard to appreciate, as evidenced by fellow Cincinnati cornerback Coby Bryant, named a finalist for the 2021 Jim Thorpe Award for the best defensive back in college football. Gardner, however, was dropped from the list.

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