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Titans Fan Guide: Showcase Saturday 2016 Edition

The opening Saturday of the 2016 college football season is here! Could it be the greatest season premiere ever?

Leonard Fournette is a GAM.
Leonard Fournette is a GAM.
Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Editor's note: A lot of credit and thanks goes out to our own Terry Lambert for agreeing to assist in this venture by providing his own insight on certain prospects. Thanks, Terry!

#3 Oklahoma vs #15 Houston NOON ABC

Location: NRG Stadium (Home of the Houston Texans)

- Houston came on like gangbusters in 2015 under first year head coach Tom Herman. What does he have for an encore? Herman is rumored for every potential job opening out there due to his initial success. The Sooners return most of their offensive firepower, including breakout star QB Baker Mayfield and reliable warhorse RB Samaje Perine. Mayfield is Johnny Football 2.0 without the off field problems nor the persona.

Oklahoma prospects to watch

1. Samaje Perine 5'10 235 RB Junior

- Perine is in the running for best running back in the country discussion. He's a bowling ball downhill type of runner. A big back for his size. Has been really consistent for his first two years of college. Broke the short lived single game rushing record that current Chargers RB Melvin Gordon set with 427 yards a week after Gordon did it.

Houston prospects to watch

1. Greg Ward, Jr 5'10 185 QB Senior

- The electrifying playmaker lit up the college football world last year with an impressive junior campaign. Physically, he's not the biggest guy in the world to man the quarterback position. My comp for him would be former Michigan Wolverine and current Jacksonville Jaguar Denard Robinson in terms of stature and style of play. Will likely have to switch positions to make it in the NFL.

#16 UCLA at Texas A&M 3:30 PM CBS

Location: Kyle Field, College Station, TX

- The 16th ranked Bruins and their rising sophomore standout QB Josh Rosen travel to College Station to take on a reeling Aggies program that has suffered through multiple QB transfers and coaching issues (a coach was seen at their bowl game punching opposing players on the sideline while another coach took shots on Twitter when a star recruit decommitted.) HC Kevin Sumlin was once a hot coaching candidate that had even NFL franchises calling about open jobs. No longer is that the case with him, he needs a SEC title to retain his job. UCLA HC Jim Mora, Jr is being seen as a candidate to return to the NFL after a decent turn at the wheel in Westwood. Expect Rosen and co to walk out with a hard fought win.

UCLA prospects to watch

1. Conor McDermott 6'9 310 OT RS Senior

- McDermott is the anchor of the Bruins offensive line. A behemoth of a tackle at 6'9 310. Frame is ideal for a left tackle but the agility is not. He has been the "franchise left tackle" since the 2014 season. Leverage is a key factor with him against the likes of Myles Garrett on opening day. More of a right tackle in the pros than anything. A bigger Jack Conklin if you will.

2. Eddie Vanderdoes 6'3 325 DL Junior

- Arik Armstead lite. He could have ended up being a better offensive tackle had he chosen that route. A 5 star recruit who is a big body run stuffer with little pass rush ability. Returns from an injury that cost him nearly the entire 2015 season. Can play both inside and outside. A better fit inside.

Texas A&M prospects to watch

1. Myles Garrett 6'5 265 EDGE Junior

- The potential top five pick will start off his 2016 campaign by chasing one of the best quarterbacks in the country in Josh Rosen. The production and athletic ability is there, but Garrett must learn how to better utilize his hands to reach his max potential.

2. Avery Gennesy 6'5 315 OT RS Senior

- The Texas A&M NFL tackle factory just keeps churning. Gennesy will start his second season at left tackle for the Aggies, looking to get his time in the limelight. He's a JuCo guy, so he was a relative unknown until last season. However he took the left tackle spot and ran with it, keeping first round pick Germain Ifedi on the right side last season. He could sneak into the first round picture this season.

#5 LSU vs Wisconsin 3:30 PM ABC

Location: Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI

- The highly touted Bayou Bengals travel to historic Lambeau Field to take on an hungry Badgers team looking for redemption in 2016 after a "down" 2015 season. Can Tigers QB Brandon Harris finally come into his own and help supplement superstar RB Leonard Fournette? Much of LSU's hopes for a very successful season rests on Harris' progression. Les Miles survived an Auburn like coup attempt at the end of the 2015 season. He likely needs a playoff berth to remain in Baton Rouge for 2017. Wisky RB Corey Clement did put up some bulletin board material for the talented Tigers defense to read.

LSU prospects to watch

1. Jamal Adams 6'1 211 S Junior

Adams looks like the next big time safety prospect, which is becoming a position of value in today's NFL. He'll jump of the screen at you, delivering blow after blow. He's an aggressive guy that has a nose for finding the football. He was able to snag four picks last season, along with racking up 67 tackles. Expect Adams to come off the board quickly next April.

2. Leonard Fournette 6'1 230 RB Junior

Fournette is such an obvious talent. He's got great size and freaky athletic ability. If LSU goes anywhere this year, it'll be on the back of Fournette. The only problem with Fournette? This crazy class of backs around him. A crowded class could push him down in the draft, unless he can set himself apart from the pack.

Wisconsin prospects to watch

1. Corey Clement 5'10 227 RB Senior

- Clement was the heir to Melvin Gordon's throne as the next great Badgers RB in 2015. It wasn't a banner year for him as he dealt with injuries that cost most of the year and ended with a fight in November. 2016 looks to be much brighter for him as he's healthy and let go of the selfish ego issues. A typical Wisconsin style big back with a decent amount of athleticism.

#18 Georgia vs #22 UNC 5:30 PM ESPN

Location: Georgia Dome, Atlanta, GA

- This year's annual SEC vs ACC showdown in Atlanta. Both teams are breaking in "new" quarterbacks as Georgia will likely start Grayson Lambert while the Heels start Mitch Trubisky (he was Marquise Williams' backup for a number of years). Georgia's new HC Kirby Smart has plenty of experience winning games at the Dome as he was Alabama's DC before joining his alma mater this past offseason. The Heels are coming off an oh so close contest in the ACC title game last year that came down to the last onside kick before losing to the national runner up Clemson Tigers. HC Larry Fedora returns with the high octane spread system he has installed over his brief tenure.

UGA prospects to watch

1. Nick Chubb 5'10 228 RB Junior

Chubb is the prototypical NFL back. He's shorter with a  great center of balance, but thick enough to bounce off tackles. A devastating knee injury ended his season last year, but he's apparently back to full strength for this weekend's contest. Let's hope his burst and agility remains in tact.

UNC prospects to watch

1. Caleb Peterson 6'5 300 OG Senior

- Landon Turner who? Peterson has the potential to make Turner a thing of the past.

2. Ryan Switzer 5'10 185 WR Senior

- 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.

#20 USC vs #1 Alabama 8 PM ABC

Location: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX

- Two of the most tradition rich college football powers finally collide after months of anticipation. Can the upstart Trojans upset the reigning national champion Crimson Tide? Has Alabama finally found a quarterback after yet another summer of intrigue? The matchups that I'm looking forward to are Alabama's defensive ends v. USC's offensive tackles, Tide CB Minkah Fitzpatrick v. USC WR JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Tide WR Calvin Ridley v. USC CB Adoree' Jackson. Alabama should handle USC easily but expect some fireworks as USC has some serious skill position talent to make it interesting.

Alabama prospects to watch

1. Tim Williams 6'4 235 EDGE Senior

Williams is a personal favorite. I love just about everything about this guy. He's explosive and violent. The only issue is whether or not he can hold up in a full time role. Williams was a situational rusher last season, blossoming in limited time. He came back to prove he can do it full time. If he's consistent and can show up against the run, he'll be a top five pick.

2. Jonathan Allen 6'3 294 DL Senior

Allen really surprised everyone by coming back for one more season in Tuscaloosa. He's a compact inside guy that understands leverage and hand usage. He's a bit of a tweener, toeing the line of an edge or and inside guy. But Allen is a guy you want on your defensive front somewhere. He's disruptive enough to warrant the first round hype. Look for him to lead this 'Bama defense with A'Shawn Robinson and Jarran Reed out of the picture.

USC prospects to watch

1. JuJu Smith-Schuster 6'2 220 WR Junior

- JuJu burst onto the scene as a freshman in 2014, taking much of the hype away from current Eagles WR Nelson Agholor and Jaguars WR Marqise Lee. Now he's a wise old veteran junior, ready to go pro like the Trojan receivers before him. He has a bigger frame than some wideouts of this generation, coming in at 6'2 220 yet has the athleticism of someone smaller. Considered to be the top receiver prospect in the country.

2. Adoree' Jackson 5'11 185 CB/WR Junior

- Jackson is probably the nation's most dynamic athlete, playing both receiver and corner in addition to return duties. He also runs track for the Trojans in the spring. Jackson is a speed merchant with a decent amount of cornerback skills to make it in the pros if the receiver thing doesn't work out. Special teams ace with several return touchdowns. He's lived up to his lofty billing as a top recruit and then some. Expect him to go pro after 2016.

3. Zach Banner 6'9 360 OT RS Senior

- Banner is a mammoth 6'9 360 and is a true road grader type of tackle. He is a little raw in terms of technique and fundamentals due to a lack of playing time but has a lot of potential. Could rise up the boards this year.

#2 Clemson at Auburn 9 PM ESPN

Location: Jordan-Hare Stadium, Auburn, AL


Clemson prospects to watch

1. DeShaun Watson 6'2 210 QB Junior

- The nation's best quarterback prospect this year. Watson, if he stays healthy and produces like he's expected to, should be the top pick next year. He has all the intangibles, especially toughness because he beat South Carolina during his freshman year on a torn ACL. His game is similar to Teddy Bridgewater.

2. Mike Williams 6'4 210 WR Junior

- Williams returns to action as he missed the entirety of the 2015 season after injuring his neck in a collision with the goal post during the first game. He has a ton of speed and agility similar to former teammate, Steelers WR Martavis Bryant. Great route runner as well.

Auburn prospects to watch

1. Carl Lawson 6'2 253 EDGE RS Junior

Lawson has been hyped for three years now, since his freshman campaign. Let's hope this is the year he can finally put it all together. He was hurt in 2014 and missed much of last season, but he has a chance to shine this year. He was one of the few to give Laremy Tunsil issues last season, flashing big time speed to power. Lawson could absolutely find himself in the first round next year with a full season in 2016.