Confirming rumors that were circulating earlier in the week, former Auburn tailback Michael Dyer will be enrolling at Louisville and is eligible to play this season.
Dyer was the MVP of the 2010 BCS Championship Game, capping off a season where he rushed for 1,093 yards. The five-star recruit had a successful sophomore campaign, rushing for 1,242 yards and ten touchdowns, but he was released from scholarship following an undisclosed violation of team rules.
Following stints at Arkansas State and Arkansas Baptist College, Dyer now lands on the Cardinals, a preseason top ten team with a Heisman favorite under center. After earning his associate's degree last month, he'll be immediately eligible. If Charlie Strong can keep Dyer in line (a big if), he will combine with Teddy Bridgewater to form one of the most talented backfields in the country.
"Based on what he has done at Arkansas Baptist College, I don't have one negative," Fitz Hill, the president of Arkansas Baptist who served as Dyer’s mentor, told USA TODAY’s George Schroeder. "I can't talk about (what happened at) Auburn or Arkansas State, but I can talk about Arkansas Baptist College. It's been all positive."
(For more on Dyer's journey and image/life rehabilitation, check out the Grantland profile on him from last month.)
Dyer will likely have to beat out junior Dominique Brown for the starting spot. Brown sat out last season with a knee injury, but rushed for 533 yards and four touchdowns in 2011, along with an addition 16 catches for 98 yards.
Louisville now has an offense that features Bridgewater, Dyer and three receivers with at least 40 catches last year, in addition to a defense that returns most of the starters. Strong’s crew is in excellent shape for a run at another conference title and BCS bowl, and while their schedule would probably limit them jumping two other undefeated teams for a spot in the title game, they're going to be in the national title conversation all season.