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Ohio State sophomore RB Ezekiel Elliott is a better outside runner and a more natural pass-catcher than former starter Carlos Hyde, according to ESPN's Todd McShay.

Of course, Hyde is the superior inside runner, though Elliott isn't exactly a wilting flower in that department. "Elliott has a good stiff-arm and an excellent center of gravity and balance (he's 6-foot-0, 225 pounds), almost always falling forward," McShay wrote. "His workload is up significantly in recent games (74 touches for 474 yards in OSU's last three games, compared to 31 for 193 in its first three)." Elliott had 262 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 8.7 yards per carry as a true freshman last year.
Oct 22 - 8:47 PM

USC junior DL Leonard Williams "is earning comparisons from scouts to everyone from [J.J.] Watt to Tampa Bay defensive tackle Gerald McCoy," according to CBS Sports' Rob Rang.

"The best player in the NFL this season very well may be Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt, but if teams were allowed to draft veterans, a number of Pro Bowl quarterbacks would be selected ahead of him," Rang wrote. "The 2015 NFL Draft could demonstrate the same value of the game's most important position. While Southern Cal defensive end Leonard Williams has been the most impressive player I've seen this season, quarterbacks Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston are more likely to generate wins for their future NFL franchises." Williams might be the draft's safest prospect, a player who could be a Pro Bowler in Year 1, but, for the reasons Rang mentioned, he isn't likely to go No. 1 overall. Williams has collected 45 tackles, including five for loss and 4.5 sacks this season.
Source: CBS Sports
Oct 22 - 8:26 PM

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said freshman QB Deshaun Watson will remain the starter as long as he's healthy.

"Yeah. Yeah. Deshaun’s the starter. Whenever he’s healthy, he’ll be back out there," Swinney said. "Guys don’t lose their jobs because they get hurt. Something unusual would have to happen for that to be the case." Watson, currently sidelined with a broken right hand, will return no later Nov. 15 against Georgia Tech. If he's healthy enough, Swinney will send out Watson, the nation's top-rated dual-threat QB in the 2014 class, on Nov. 6 versus Wake Forest. Cole Stoudt will continue to play until Watson's return.
Oct 22 - 8:10 PM

ESPN's Todd McShay believes Ohio State sophomore WR Michael Thomas "has a chance to be an elite player."

"He has strong hands and great body control and transition quickness after the catch, and he's been getting better at the little things (backside route-running, working back to the QB after the initial play breaks down, blocking in the running and screen games)," McShay wrote. Ohio State's go-to receiver, Keyshawn Johnson's nephew, is averaging 18.0 yards per catch and has five touchdowns.
Oct 22 - 7:49 PM

Washington junior OLB Shaq Thompson possesses "excellent athleticism and awareness in coverage, traits that project well in today's pass-happy NFL," according to CBS Sports' Rob Rang.

"Anxious to get to their playmakers closer to the line of scrimmage, the Huskies moved Thompson to linebacker after he signed with the team as a highly regarded safety, and the move has paid off brilliantly with the instinctive and athletic defender emerging as one of the top defensive playmakers in college football, scoring four defensive touchdowns thus far this season," Rang wrote. The analyst ranks Thompson No. 18 overall on his big board. We see a Ryan Shazier-type defensive playmaker.
Source: CBS Sports
Oct 22 - 7:30 PM

Cincinnati has placed senior QB Jarred Evans (assault charge) on indefinite suspension.

Evans was arrested on a misdemeanor assault charge early Sunday morning for allegedly punching a man, causing a concussion and requiring stitches. "It’s just hard to get through their heads that you are different than everybody else," HC Tommy Tuberville said. "You can’t even think about making a mistake or even being close to a mistake. Even if it’s not your fault, you’re still implicated. So, that’s how we handle it and I hope our players on the team see that and understand that and we’ll go from there." Evans, a backup, may have played his last snap as a Bearcat, though Tuberville stressed that there’s a "[g]ood chance he’s not guilty."
Oct 22 - 7:15 PM

Ohio State senior TE Jeff Heuerman reminds ESPN's Todd McShay of former Stanford standout Zach Ertz.

"Heuerman has an excellent blend of height and weight (6-5, 250) and top-end speed," McShay wrote. "He has work to do as a route-runner, but he can stretch the seam and come down with 50-50 balls. He does a good job as a blocker." The 6-foot-5, 255-pound Heuerman has only five catches for 82 yards this year after grabbing 26 receptions and 466 receiving yards last season. ESPN's Steve Muench wrote earlier this week that Heuerman "has the tools to be a more productive player at the professional level than he has been for Ohio State."
Oct 22 - 7:01 PM

An NFC North scout said West Virginia senior WR Kevin White "could help all 32 teams right now."

"KW is a man," the scout said. "He's playing at a different level than most receivers in the college game. Speed. Size. Ball skills. He's making it look easy out there." The 6-foot-3, 210-pound leads the FBS with 69 receptions for 1,020 yards and seven touchdowns. "He has outstanding leaping ability and reflexes to make adjustments to easily secure balls away from his body and is at his best highpointing and plucking with his large, reliable hands," wrote CBS Sports' Dane Brugler. "White has very good foot quickness to beat press and get vertical in a hurry with his downfield acceleration. He displays above average coordination and footwork in his breaks to create separation at the top of his routes and catch the ball without breaking stride to create after the reception." White, who is most often compared to Larry Fitzgerald, is ranked as the No. 1 senior WR by NFLDraftScout.com, which projects him as a top-20 draft pick.
Source: CBS Sports
Oct 22 - 6:47 PM

Ohio State sophomore OW Dontre Wilson "is a versatile, Percy Harvin-type of player," writes ESPN's Todd McShay.

"He's a notch below Harvin in terms of explosiveness; Wilson has great speed and is quick, but isn't quite as sudden in his movements as Harvin," McShay wrote. "The Buckeyes have been working to manufacture touches for Wilson, and it'd be even easier for them to get him the ball if he improved as a route-runner." The popular preseason breakout selection has only 13 runs for 80 yards and 14 receptions for 221 yards and a score in 2014. His lack of touches over the past year-and-a-half has been a little puzzling, frankly. Last year, the dearth was blamed on his skinny frame. This year, apparently it's his route running.
Oct 22 - 6:31 PM

UCLA redshirt sophomore RB Paul Perkins "has has proven himself to be one of the top backs in the country," writes ESPN's KC Joyner.

Perkins ranks No. 5 amongst running backs in YPC (6.7) and percentage of rushing plays with five yards or more (47.7 percent) against Power 5 teams (50 rush minimum), according to Joyner. That he's doing it behind UCLA's dysfunctional offensive line makes it all the more impressive. "Perkins' big-play ability is evident in his No. 2 ranking in rushing plays of 10 or more yards (23)," Joyner wrote. "Great vision is another of his traits. That was on display when he did a superb job reading the defense and using blocks on a 49-yard screen pass that went for a touchdown against California."
Oct 22 - 6:14 PM

University of Texas athletics director Steve Patterson announced the school will soon begin paying its student-athletes $10,000 a year apiece to cover cost of attendance and likeness rights.

The figure, set by U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken in her O’Bannon trial ruling in August, will be split evenly, so that $5,000 will go towards cost-of-attendance and $5,000 will serve as payment for UT’s use of the athlete’s name and likeness. In all, the school will be on the hook for about $6 million. "If we begin to [further] remunerate the participants, that’s going to break that model," Chris Plonsky, director for women’s sports at Texas, said. The school hasn't announced when it will begin to make these payouts, though next fall seems like a reasonable guess. Texas is the first school to announce it will compensate its athletes beyond scholarships following August's O'Bannon ruling. Presumably, all Power Five program will follow suit.
Oct 22 - 5:56 PM

ESPN's Steve Muench thinks that Miami redshirt senior TE Clive Walford's "lack of ideal top-end speed stands out on tape, and he's not much of a threat to get behind the defense."

"However, he knows how to get open underneath," Muench wrote. "He is quicker than fast and flashes good suddenness as a route runner, plus he has the heavy hands to create separation with his upper body without having to extend and risk getting flagged for offensive pass interference." Walford, who has posted 23 catches for 306 yards and four touchdowns, should post career numbers across the board during his senior campaign. "While Walford's ball skills are a touch inconsistent, he has the long arms and big hands to snatch passes thrown outside of his frame," Muench wrote. "He showed the ability to make plays working against tight coverage and over the middle against Nebraska this year. Finally, there's a lot to like about his edge. He's a competitive blocker, he runs hard after the catch and he can get under the skin of defenders."
Oct 22 - 5:33 PM

Wisconsin HC Gary Andersen recently noted that redshirt junior RB Melvin Gordon has "become more of a vocal leader" this year.

"I did ask him to become a true leader on this football team," Gary Andersen told Fox Sports. "He's always been a leader by example. But he's more of a vocal leader this year. I think he wanted to get into that realm this year." Last season, Gordon had a break out year with 1,609 yards and 12 touchdowns, as the Badgers full-time back. This season Gordon has picked up where he left off, as the junior has rushed for 1,046 yards in six games with 13 touchdowns. While continuing to excel on the football field, the Badgers' prospect excels off the field, as well. Anderson added that it was important for Gordon "to come back and be a very positive mentor" for the youth of this program.
Source: Fox Sports
Oct 22 - 4:07 PM

Sports Illustrated's Zac Ellis notes that Baylor redshirt senior QB Bryce Petty's "roller coaster Heisman campaign took another dip against West Virginia."

"Has anyone had a more up-and-down Heisman campaign than Petty? The Baylor quarterback looked sluggish in a win over Texas on Oct. 4. He redeemed himself with fourth-quarter heroics in a shootout victory over TCU last week. But on Saturday Petty’s roller coaster Heisman campaign took another dip against West Virginia," Ellis wrote. The 6-foot-3, 230-pound Petty, completed 16-of-36 attempts for 223 yards and two touchdowns in a 41-27 loss against West Virginia on Saturday. Ellis believes Petty's "Heisman shot hinges on eye-popping stats and his leadership of a contending team."
Oct 22 - 3:20 PM

NFL Media Analyst Daniel Jeremiah calls West Virginia senior WR Kevin White a "pretty special talent."

"Studying West Virginia WR Kevin White and I've already had about 5 wow moments in 2 games. Pretty special talent," Jeremiah tweeted. The 6-foot-3, 210-pound White is on pace for 128 catches, 1,885 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns. He toted a Day 3 grade into the season, but White is firmly on the late-Round 1/early-Round 2 line at the moment.
Oct 22 - 3:13 PM



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