Greetings 49er Faithful! We are back with our breakdown of college football's Week 3 Saturday action. Each week throughout the college season we will break down a few college football games providing highlights and profiles of a few notable draft-eligible prospects you should pay attention to. This will help people build a list of names to know when we get into the offseason.
We've got two huge matchups this week. No. 3 Ohio State is traveling to face No. 14 Oklahoma, and apparently the Sooners are a home underdog for the first time in like 15 years. We also have No. 2 Florida State visiting No. 10 Louisville. So, sit back, put your scouting hat on, and let's get things started with Week 3.
No. 3 Ohio State vs. No. 14 Oklahoma
Date: Saturday, September 17
Game Time: 4:30 p.m.
Location: Memorial Stadium, Norman, Oklahoma
Ohio State prospects to watch:
Raekwon McMillian | LB | No. 5 | Junior | 6’2" | 243 lbs
Scouting Report: McMillian possesses an absolute stellar blend of size and speed. His adept ability to fill the run and play sideline-to-sideline is to likes of many NFL organizations. No. 5 is an extremely instinctive player with quick recognition and anticipation skills. McMillian excels at fighting off opposing lineman and locating the ball carrier, displaying strength and active hands while doing so. In pass coverage, he plays balanced and alert, rarely getting fooled by fakes. On the downside, McMillian is more of a football player than anything, meaning his athleticism is up to par at best. He lacks elite burst and closing speed, infrequently exploding into the backfield and making a tackle for a loss. Short area quickness is not a strong suit of the Buckeye’s star defender.
J.T. Barrett | QB | No. 16 | Junior | 6’2" | 222 lbs
Scouting Report: Athletic. Barrett is a threat every single down to make a play with his legs. He is a willing runner and will not shy away from a collision for extra yards. Barret is also a very accurate passer. He delivers the ball on time and on target on a good number of his throws. He commands the field well and is said to be a great leader. Some of Barrett’s negatives include size, off-the-field issues and panicking. While he does have the ability to run, Barret is often seen exiting the pocket prematurely if he hears footsteps. In addition, some of Barrett’s tosses will lose velocity and die. His frame isn’t the biggest worry to me as other smaller quarterbacks in the NFL have proven to be successes, but I’m positive teams will pass on him in the draft to due to his size. As for his non-football related problems, he was arrested for operating a vehicle last November. In addition, some of Barrett’s tosses will lose velocity and die.
Other Ohio State players to watch: (DE) Sam Hubbard, (C/OG) Pat Eflein, (OLB) Dante Booker, (DE) Tyquan Lewis, (WR) Corey Smith, (CB) Gareon Conley
Oklahoma prospects to watch:
Baker Mayfield | QB | No. 6 | Redshirt Junior | 6’1" | 210 lbs
Scouting Report: Despite early success with Texas Tech, Mayfield transferred after his freshman season due to communication issues with the coaching staff. He wound up at Oklahoma and after sitting out the 2014 season, he started the 2015 year, tallying 3,700 yards and 36 scores. Mayfield has a lot to like about, starting with his ability to contort his body and make throws from variety of different positions. He’s an athletic passer with a fearless mentality when it comes to delivering passes in tight windows. He is elusive in the pocket and plays with upmost effort and competitiveness. However, Mayfield does lack elite arm strength, leaving the deep ball short quite often. He does not have a natural feel for the pocket and will escape it early, a sign of dependency on his legs.
Other Oklahoma players to watch: (RB) Samaje Perine, (RB) Joe Mixon, (WR) Dede Westbrook, (DT) Charles Walker, (CB) Jordan Thomas, (FS) Ahmad Thomas
No. 2 FSU vs. No. 10 Louisville
Date: Saturday September, 17
Game Time: 12:00 p.m.
Location: Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, Louisville, KY
Louisville prospects to Watch:
Josh Harvey-Clemons | Safety | No. 25 | Junior | 6’5" | 230 lbs
Scouting Report: He showcases outstanding size and is a hard-nosed hitter. Harvey-Clemons is a very solid tackler and retains long arms to fight his way off blocks. Plays physical and can contest with bigger receivers. On the downside, JHC is not a true burner. He also does have some trouble in coverage at times.
Devonte Fields | OLB | No. 92 | 6’3" | 245 lbs
Scouting Report: A speedster. Fields displays excellent burst and quickness off the line of scrimmage. He is routinely finding his way into the backfield due to his explosion off the line. He’s fairly flexible and can run the arc fluidly. In the run game, he stays patient and diagnoses the play before making his decisions. However, he’s all speed. No power. He does not have the strength or leg drive to knock offensive linemen back or off balance. In pass coverage, he struggles blanketing his receivers and gives up too much separation in and out of their cuts.
Other Players to Watch: (ILB) Keith Kelsey, (DT) Deangelo Brown, (WR) James Quick, (RB) Brandon Radcliff
FSU prospects to watch:
Dalvin Cook | RB | No. 4 | Junior | 5’11" | 213 lbs
Scouting Report: Cook is an exceptionally slippery runner with top-shelf vision and burst when he sees an opening. He is a fluid running back and can make defenders miss without having to gear down. Cook is freakishly dangerous in the open and a threat to take it the distance every play due to his flat out blazing speed. He is a scrappy competitor who will fight for extra yards and toss his body around to protect his quarterback in pass blocking. Cook also does a nice job of catching the football, and will likely prove to be a viable pass-catcher with NFL development. While there aren’t many blemishes in his game, Cook does find trouble in lowering his shoulder in short yardage situations. He isn’t a bulldozer and often gets taken down after initial contact.