The former five-star recruit is beginning to look comfortable playing weakside linebacker in Ellis Johnson's scheme. That's not good news for SEC opponents (or Kansas State QB Jake Waters on Thursday night) but it could be for NFL teams in need of a chase linebacker.
Differing styles and burgeoning NFL prospects highlighted the late-night Big Ten/Pac-12 showdown between Rutgers and Washington State with the Scarlet Knights and star running back Paul James outlasting the Cougars and hard-luck quarterback Connor Halliday.
In his first game at left tackle, Texas A&M senior Cedric Ogbuehi looked every bit the part of a projected top three pick. The shocker wasn't that the Aggies could replace Jake Matthews but how quickly sophomore Kenny Hill could make college football forget about Johnny Manziel.
Today's kickoff of the D-I season serves as the New Year holiday in football. As such, here are my five bold predictions for the 2014 season and the impact they'll have on the 2015 NFL draft. Surprising Heisman winner? Check. Breakout NFL prospects? You know it. Improbable national title and Super Bowl predictions? Yep, got those too.
The Commodores aren't as talented as many of their SEC competitors but a couple of seniors could aid new head coach Derek Mason's transition from Stanford and boost their own NFL chances along the way. This is the last in a summer-long series from NFLDraftScout.com breaking down the top prospects from every D-I program.
Early jumps to the NFL from Johnny Manziel, Mike Evans and others has left the draft-eligible talent surprisingly shallow for the Aggies. One notable exception, of course, is Cedric Ogbuehi, the top-rated senior prospect in the land, regardless of position.
The Vols haven't qualified for a bowl game the last three years but remain very much on the NFL radar with eight draft picks over that time, including two first round selections (Ju'Wuan James, Cordarrelle Patterson). Defenders A.J. Johnson and Brian Randolph (among others) will have the scouts returning to Knoxville this fall.
Despite losing Jadeveon Clowney (and Kelcy Quarles) early to the NFL, the Gamecocks remain quite talented along the line of scrimmage and feature a new big man on campus in junior running back Mike Davis.
Losing star pass rushers Michael Sam and Kony Ealy to the NFL would decimate most defenses. Missouri's extraordinary run of defensive linemen is in good hands with Markus Golden and Shane Ray, however. They top the Tigers' list of NFL prospects.
Seeking a team-record fifth consecutive bowl appearance, the Bulldogs offer some intriguing talent for NFL scouts, including junior Benardrick McKinney, one of the most athletic linebackers in the country.