The War Room: Bernard Berrian, WR, Fresno State
College: Fresno State
Birthday: December 27, 1980
Strengths: David Carr’s huge target in college, Bernard Berrian has explosive athletic ability. As a receiver, Berrian can leap over defenders to pull down a ball or he can blaze past them for a gamebreaking score with his incredible speed. His stock is the type that will rise post-season when the pre-draft workouts begin.
Berrian hit the national stage last year in an early season comeback win for Fresno State over Wisconsin. He did so not as only a receiver, but as a returner, too. Berrian set the tone for the second half with an opening kickoff return of 96 yards for a score.
His big time talent has translated into record-setting production on the field. It is safe to mention him in the same breath with Marshall Faulk and LaDainian Tomlinson, at least in terms of collegiate excellence. Those were the two previous Western Athletic Conference record holders for all-purpose yardage, something Berrian eclipsed them in last season when he totaled 2,591 yards. Berrian’s numbers included return yardage, but he still had far fewer touches per game at wideout than those two did at running back.
Areas for Concern: Can Berrian be as productive this year as he was last, even without Carr under center for the Bulldogs? Even if he is not, Berrian has proven he can produce results with an NFL-quality quarterback. And it’s not like Carr was working the wedge on his returns last fall, either.
Berrian did miss spring drills due to a toe injury, though it is not expected to be a concern during the season. While Berrian quietly considered leaving for the draft a year early, he made the right choice to stick around for his senior season. Berrian needs to refine his skills and dominate at the college level one more year.
How Would He Look in Steel Blue? Did I mention he was Carr’s target in college? Hooking these two up again may be a match made in heaven.
The Texans currently have able bodies in the return game, but Berrian could be Houston’s returner of the future if he is their selection on draft day. According to an article in the Fresno Bee in November 2001, Berrian has already grabbed the attention of GM Charley Casserly.
The question could become where in the 2003 draft Berrian will be taken. He has the talent of a top ten pick, but with less of a spotlight on the post-Carr Fresno State program this year, Berrian may also slip to the second round, too.
(profile written by Keith Weiland)
Bernard Berrian’s 2001 Stats G CTH YDS AVG TD 13 76 1,270 16.7 13 Bernard Berrian Return to The War Room
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