Scotty McKnight has caught 29 passes for 325 yards through four games. He has found the end zone three times, including an impressive fourth-down catch for a score at West Virginia last week.
Coach Dan Hawkins told reporters after the loss to the Mountaineers that McKnight's touchdown came when he improvised his route after beating his man off the line of scrimmage.
"He's such a workhorse and he's so tough," Dan Hawkins said. "Really the thouchdown pass...It really wasn't necessarily the route. I said, 'Scotty, wy did you convert that?' He goes, 'Coach, I just broke him down off the line of scrimmage. I threw my hand up and went deep.'
"He gets whacked and gets up. He's tough. He's smart. He's got good hands. I think he's a lot faster than most people think. He can get in and out of his breaks. He's a good football player."
McKnight is averaging 7.5 catches per game. He finds ways to get open despite opponents expectations that he will be getting the ball. If that's not the definition of a playmaker, what is?
McKnight said he is not surprised by how much he is getting the ball this season. He said he expected to be a focal point of the offense before the season started.
We've got some young guys," McKnight said. "So I think once they get going a little bit, it will be a little more balanced."
McKnight said he is also trying to be a leader in the locker room and on the sidelines, and part of doing that right now is keeping his teammates focused and positive, despite a tough start.
"We can't get down on ourselves," he said. "We haven't even started league play yet. We feel like we've got a good team. We've just got to keep working, and that's part of this. Sometimes things don't go the way you want it. It's adversity. You've got to deal with it and move on."
The Buffs get back to work this afternoon on the practice fields. They will have Monday off and will practice the rest of the week leading up to Saturday's Big 12 Conference opener against the No. 2 team in the nation, the Texas Longhorns.