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Titans Fan Guide: Separation Saturday

An exciting Saturday full of intrigue in the ACC, Pac 12, and Big 10.

Su'a Cravens. Do. Want
Su'a Cravens. Do. Want
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois at UNC NOON EDT ESPN2

  • Illinois pays a visit to Chapel Hill after a 2-0 start to the season in which their coach was fired for player mistreatment allegations two weeks before the season began. North Carolina is 1-1 after losing their opener to South Carolina and winning against North Carolina A&T. Who will win in this football version of the ACC vs Big Ten challenge? The Tar Heels should pull this one out with their talent edge over the Illini.

Illinois prospect to watch

Wes Lunt 6’4 225 QB RS Junior

  • Lunt transferred in from Oklahoma State in 2013. He has the tools to make it to the NFL but lacks consistency and the injury history is very frightening. Features a big league arm but accuracy isn’t there yet. Missed four games in 2014 with a broken leg.

UNC Prospects to watch:

Ryan Switzer WR 5’10 185 Junior

  • The last name may sound familiar as Ryan is the grandson of legendary Oklahoma and Dallas Cowboys head coach Barry. Switzer is purely a slot receiver and return man in the mold of a Wes Welker as he lacks ideal measurables for the NFL. He has several return touchdowns in his career. Has played both inside and outside receiver positions. It’s highly probable that he stays for his senior season.

Landon Turner OG 6’3 325 RS Senior

  • A massive road grader type of guard who needs to refine the technical aspects of his game. Has a good base and lower body strength. Turner’s hand usage is subpar in that he relies too much on his strength. He could be the top senior guard off the board in 2016.

Nebraska at Miami 3:30 PM ABC/ESPN2

  • Nebraska heads to the sunny beaches of Miami to complete the home and home series with the Hurricanes. The Cornhuskers are 1-1 after losing on a last second hail mary play to BYU (who has a habit of doing that) and beating South Alabama 48-9. Miami is 2-0 with victories over Bethune Cookman and Florida Atlantic. The Canes defeated the Huskers last year in Lincoln behind the legs of Duke Johnson. Can the Huskers get their revenge for the defeat and claim bragging rights over the all time series?

Nebraska prospects to watch

Maliek Collins 6’2 300 DT Junior

  • Collins is more of an athlete than a technician at the tackle spot. His footwork and agility are above average. However, it’s all he needs to improve on technique instead of relying on his speed and athleticism. Hand usage is good enough to get by. Needs to develop a countermove to offset his great first step.

Jordan Westerkamp 6’0 195 WR RS Junior

  • Westerkamp is Nebraska’s top returning receiver and will replace the departed Kenny Bell as the lead dog. Due to his size limitations, he will be limited to the slot in the NFL unless he shows some improvement on the outside. It could be a long 2015 for him as Nebraska’s QB situation is unsettled and very inconsistent.

Miami prospects to watch

Stacy Coley 6’1 187 WR Junior

  • Phillip Dorsett who? Coley could end up being a better receiver than Dorsett in their Miami careers. He was a highly touted recruit that signed with the Canes despite their uncertain QB situation and NCAA allegations at the time. Needs to improve his consistency in route running and hands. Needs to quit looking for the home run play and takes what the defense gives him. Experienced at both punt and kick returns. Needs to add more muscle to his frame as currently built, he won’t hold up for the rigors of an NFL schedule.

Deon Bush 6’1 205 S Senior

  • Bush is a Canes lifer in that he stuck around even with all the negativity surrounding the program. On the field, he could end up challenging for the best safety in the class when it’s all said and done. Miami’s best defender and it isn’t close. Been used in a variety of situations. Needs to hit the weight room along with Coley. Fundamentally sound tackler and is very consistent in pass defense.

#14 Georgia Tech at #8 Notre Dame 3:30 PM NBC

  • The vaunted Yellow Jackets rushing attack visits the talented Fighting Irish defense. The game has lost some of its luster as ND QB Malik Zaire was lost for the season last week with a broken ankle. Can GT keep their stranglehold as the favorites to win the ACC title? This game will go a long way in determining that fate. Can the Irish rebound from the loss of Zaire? In steps a redshirt freshman Deshone Kizer for the Irish at QB. Can he hold up against the unheralded Yellow Jacket’s defense? Notre Dame wins a close one with their defense carrying the day against the Tech option attack.

Georgia Tech prospect to watch

Jamal Golden 5’11 193 S RS Senior

  • Golden is one of the best safeties in the ACC. His measureables aren’t the greatest in the world but makes up for it with tremendous instincts and closing speed. Golden is fundamentally sound in all aspects of the defense. Experienced as a kick returner. Has an injury history as he was redshirted in 2013 for one.

Notre Dame prospects to watch

Ronnie Stanley 6’5 315 OT RS Junior

  • Stanley could’ve been the first tackle off the board in the 2015 draft had he declared for early entry. He’s the best tackle in the country by far.

Nick Martin 6’3 320 G/C Senior

  • Martin is the younger brother of current Cowboys lineman Zack. Nick might end up being a better pro prospect. Can play both guard and center but will likely end up as a guard at the next level.

KeiVarae Russell 5’11 190 CB Senior

  • Russell is doing the Everett Golson aka returning from a year long academic misconduct suspension. He has the potential to be the best corner in the country. Revis Island like potential.

Sheldon Day 6’2 285 DT Senior

  • Day is this year’s Grady Jarrett in that he can play all of the line positions without losing a step. A still raw prospect that has yet to fully utilize all of his talents. He flashed particularly well against Florida State last year.

Jaylon Smith 6’2 235 OLB Junior

  • A tackling machine that could be considered as the best outside linebacker in the nation. The defensive general for the Irish. A smaller Von Miller if you will.

Stanford at #6 USC 8 PM ABC

  • The Cardinal come into tonight’s matchup still reeling from the upset loss to Northwestern in week 1. USC is on a 2-0 run after blowing out two FCS schools. This game has turned into a rivalry over the past few years as Stanford has beaten USC a number of times. Incidentally, the Trojans AD Pat Haden embarrassed himself last year in this game by running onto the field to question a referee’s call. USC by far has the better talent of the two but you never know with rivalry games. #6 USC rides the arm of #6 and wins in convincing fashion.

Stanford prospect to watch

Kevin Hogan 6’4 218 QB Senior

  • Hogan needs a bounce back game in the worst way as he’s started 2015 off on a bad note. He has a good enough arm to make the throws but for some reason or another hasn’t put it all together this year.

USC prospects to watch

Cody Kessler 6’1 215 QB RS Senior

  • Kessler is the presumptive favorite for the 2015 Heisman as of this writing. He’s limited athletically as a prospect but is more of a game manager type. Pocket awareness is above average as well as footwork. Arm strength is a concern as he lacks it to make the big league throws to the outside. In the running for best QB in the country.

Max Tuerk 6’6 285 OL Senior

  • Tuerk makes observers harken back to the glory days of former Trojan linemen standouts. He’s been used at every lineman position but his best is at center and left tackle. Long arms and great hand usage. Base and footwork are very good. Intelligence is good as well.

Su’a Cravens 6’1 225 OLB Junior

  • Cravens could be the best defender in the Pac-12. Position versatile as he originally started out at safety before converting to linebacker last year. Athleticism is very good as the hips are fluid and footwork is impressive. Instincts are great as well. Finds the hole in the offensive scheme and attacks it. Pass defense is underrated as he shows an uncanny ability to always find the ball.

Bonus games to watch

Cal at Texas 7:30 PM Fox

#19 BYU at #10 UCLA 10:30 PM Fox Sports 1