Toledo's Wilcher (Cass Tech) looks to stay perfect vs. CMU

Toledo's Wilcher (Cass Tech) looks to stay perfect vs. CMU


Toledo's Wilcher (Cass Tech) looks to stay perfect vs. CMU


Toledo wide receiver Kishon Wilcher

Toledo wide receiver Kishon Wilcher

Kishon Wilcher never has lost to Central Michigan.

The Toledo receiver from Detroit Cass Tech gets his chance to finish 3-0 against the Chippewas tonight when the Rockets travel to Mt. Pleasant.

CMU and Toledo are 4-1 in the MAC West. Western Michigan, the Rockets’ final regular-season foe, is 5-0.

The Rockets (7-1) suffered their first loss Nov. 3, 32-27, at home to Northern Illinois.

“That was tough,” said Wilcher, a 5-foot-7 fifth-year senior. “It was a tough loss, but we’ll bounce back.

“We had a big win at Arkansas (16-12). They were ranked 18th at the time. I had a big catch in that game. It was a big thrill for the program.”

It went for 25 yards on a third down, his only target of the game.

Wilcher’s career has been one of frustration at Toledo only because of the injuries.

This season he has eight catches for 84 yards. Heading into the season he had 19 catches for 275 yards and two touchdowns. He’s a slot receiver now after being moved from defensive back.

He tore his labrum in 2012, which caused him to miss all but three games. He redshirted that year and had to overcome a knee injury over this summer.

In 2011, he played in all 13 games as a defensive back and on special teams, leading the freshmen in tackles with 28. In 2013, he played 10 games at cornerback and totaled five unassisted tackles. A year ago, he played in all 13 games as a slot receiver and had an 89-yard reception against Eastern Michigan. As a returner a year ago, he had 27 kickoff returns for a 23.2 average.

Speed runs in the family.

His father, Thomas Wilcher, the football coach at Cass Tech, was a world-class hurdler as a teenager and starred at Michigan on the track and football field.

“After the injury, I’ve been strictly a wideout,” said Wilcher, who has put on 30 pounds of muscle. “I control what I can control. Things happen for a reason. I’m still glad I made the decision I came here. It’s been a long, tough ride. Dealt with a lot of injuries. I’ve had a good experience. College is so much different. The time management. The speed of the game, the size difference.”

Don’t expect Wilcher to take over for his dad anytime soon at Cass Tech.

“I know that’s what people may be looking for, but he’s doing good things and hopefully he’ll stay there until he isn’t kicking anymore,” Kishon Wilcher said. “I don’t know about the coaching thing yet.”

Contact Perry A. Farrell: 313-222-2555 or Follow him on Twitter @farrellperry.

MAC the night

What: Toledo (7-1, 4-1 MAC) at Central Michigan (5-4, 4-1).

Kickoff: 8 tonight, Kelly/Shorts Stadium, Mt. Pleasant.

TV/radio: ESPN2, WXYT-AM (1270).

Line: Toledo by 4.


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