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2012 MAC Championship: Dri Archer drawing national praise at Kent State

Dri Archer is drawing national praise for Kent State now that teams no longer want to kick to him due to his explosive return ability.

Kirk Irwin

Kent State is set to take on Northern Illinois in the 2012 MAC Championship game, and they have a great deal of thanks to give for kick returner Dri Archer. He is obviously Kent State's key to win, though teams have taken it upon themselves to not kick in his direction.

Such a fact was pointed out by analyst and Cleveland native (not to mention former Heisman winner at Michigan) Desmond Howard, via

"That is a tremendous compliment to his talents. I mean, you can't get a bigger compliment. That opponent is saying we want to keep the ball totally out of your hands. Because we can't stop you. We don't want to slow you down, or limit your touches, or keep you on one side of the field. We know you can hurt us, so we want to eliminate you completely from the equation."

Unfortunately for Archer, the Huskies will be trying harder than ever to keep the ball out of his hands. If he's to be the difference maker, then Kent State would need to figure out how to get him the football, because Northern Illinois will surely put the ball out of bounds or through the endzone at every opportunity given to them.

The two teams play on Friday night at Ford Field at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.