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Titans Fan Guide: Sunny Showdown Saturday Edition

NCAA Football: Samford at Florida State
Brian Burns. He #good
Glenn Beil-USA TODAY Sports

An interesting weekend filled with rivalries across the country. Which prospects will step up and lead their team to victory?

#19 Texas vs. #7 Oklahoma NOON FOX

- The Red River Rivalry (Shootout as colloquially known to fans) has the potential to be a good one as it usually is. Texas has some fans declaring it is back but beat Oklahoma then they are truly back. The Sooners offense has been a video game led by QB Kyler Murray. The Longhorns may have the firepower to keep up but they need the defense to step it up a notch. Who will wear the golden hat at the end of the game? The state fair is always fun as well. Everything fried!

Texas prospects to watch

1. Kris Boyd 6’0 195 CB Senior

- The leader of a resurgent Horns secondary. A dominant playmaker. Size and speed are a plus. Has been excellent thus far into the 2018 season. One of the best corners in the nation.

2. Breckyn Hager 6’3 255 EDGE Senior

- Hager transitioned to an edge role after playing mainly as a linebacker his first three years. Speed and athleticism are above average. He has been largely absent of any big plays so far into the 2018 season for some unknown reason. A bowling ball of relentless energy.

3. Collin Johnson 6’6 215 WR Junior

- The Horns’ jump ball specialist. Route running is just average but he uses his size well to box out defenders to make a tough catch. The main target for the QB but QB issues have prevented him from being the true dominant threat he could become. A willing blocker most of the time. He has made the spectacular catch routine.

4. Brandon Jones 6’0 205 S Junior

- Jones is a safety prospect that no one talks about nationally. He’s an intriguing talent that had to grow up in a hurry due to various reasons. Had some growing pains due to being on the field so early into his career but has matured. A ball hawk.

5. Gary Johnson 6’0 225 LB Senior

- A player that is always around the ball it seems. He’s risen up the boards rapidly during his senior season. A bit undersized for the linebacker position. Football IQ is a plus and is very fundamentally sound. Outstanding as a junior but has elevated his play as a senior.

Oklahoma prospect to watch

1. Bobby Evans 6’5 299 OT RS Junior

- He has stepped in seamlessly for current Baltimore Raven Orlando Brown and the Sooners offense hasn’t skipped a beat. One of the better tackles in the country. Athleticism is a plus. Footwork is solid.

#5 LSU at #22 Florida 3:30 PM CBS

- The undefeated Bayou Bengals pay a visit to the Swamp to take on an improving Gators squad. Usually a defensive battle between these two rivals. Florida HC Dan Mullen knows these Tigers well after tangling with them for years at Miss State. LSU’s offense is pretty solid as well.

LSU prospects to watch

1. Greedy Williams 6’1 182 CB RS Sophomore

- Williams has the speed and athleticism thing down pat along with the height. Lateral agility is a major plus. Can keep up with any receiver in the nation. Consistency is a major issue at times.

2. Devin White 6’0 240 LB Junior

- Next man up to take the star linebacker turn in Baton Rouge before going pro. White has had a solid junior season thus far. He’s now the leader of the defense.

3. Nick Brossette 6’0 221 RB Senior

- A solid in between the tackles type of power back that can move the chains. Athleticism is a plus. Finally has a chance to shine with Derrius Guice off to the pros. Has had a pretty good 2018 senior season so far.

4. Grant Delpit 6’3 203 S Sophomore

- Delpit has been a revelation this season for the Tigers. He’s one of the best safeties in the nation, regardless of class and will be firmly on the radar as a junior next year. A ball hawk with sound fundamentals. Size isn’t a question. Keep an eye out for him in 2019.

Florida prospects to watch

1. Jachai Polite 6’2 260 EDGE Junior

- Speaking of revelations, Polite has been one for a rebuilding Gators defense that has been a force to be reckoned with. He’s rising up the boards rapidly in 2018. Athleticism is a major plus. Fundamentally raw as he is relatively inexperienced as a junior.

2. Van Jefferson 6’1 195 WR RS Junior

- Jefferson is a familiar face in the SEC as he transferred from Ole Miss and was given immediate eligibility to play by the NCAA due to scandal. He’s a solid receiver prospect that could go pro. The Gators’ main weapon.

Florida State at #17 Miami 3:30 PM ABC

- Once upon a time, this rivalry game was the rivalry game of the year no matter the record. These two programs were the envy of college football for years until a downturn happened. Miami is in the ascendancy while FSU is struggling to find itself under new coach Willie Taggart. Miami by 30+ this year. Florida State has 0 OL and Miami’s talented front will feast upon that. Maybe next year, Noles.

Florida State prospects to watch

1. Brian Burns 6’5 231 EDGE Junior

- Josh Sweat who? Burns has been one of the premier EDGE defenders in the country for the past two years. He hasn’t produced a ton as a junior due to various reasons such as injury and lack of support from teammates. A long and lanky defender that could add some weight. A pass rush terror when he’s on.

2. Demarcus Christmas 6’4 308 DT RS Senior

- The long line of standout FSU defensive tackles continues. Christmas is the latest. He could have gone pro as a RS Junior and could’ve gotten drafted in the middle rounds. He’s a bit underrated due to the strength of the defensive line class. A strong run defender who can also rush the passer in bursts.

3. Levonta Taylor 5’10 181 CB Junior

- Taylor is an intriguing corner prospect that is having a horrid time of things as a junior. Teams have exploited his side of the field due to his lack of height. He should come back to school as a senior.

Miami prospects to watch

1. Jaquan Johnson 5’11 190 S Senior

- Johnson is one of the best safeties in the class that hardly anyone talks about. He’s been at Miami for a long time now. Was one of the best safeties last year in the entire ACC and three of them got drafted within the first two rounds in 2018. A guy who’s seemingly always around the ball. Tackling fundamentals are on point. Football IQ is a plus. Returning from injury.

2. Tyree St. Louis 6’5 305 OT Senior

- Underrated tackle prospect that has been on the radar for a couple of years now. Versatile enough to play both tackle positions. Has played left tackle as senior.

3. Michael Pinckney 6’1 220 LB Junior

- One of the best linebackers in the ACC. Undersized, yes but so are the times of the NFL in regards to the position. Can cover sideline to sideline with the best. Football IQ is a plus. The frame questions will cause some pause for teams as he gets lost in the wash quite frequently.

4. Gerald Willis III 6’2 280 DT RS Senior

- Willis has been a monster in the middle for the Canes this season. He singlehandedly kept them in it with LSU. Athleticism is on point. Still refining the little things in terms of fundamentals. He’s vaulted himself into early round conversations with his play. Infamously known as the second brother to spurn LSU in front of his LSU fan mother on national TV at the Under Armour HS game. Landon Collins is his step brother.

#13 Kentucky at Texas A&M 7 PM ESPN

- A surprising Wildcats team is travelling to noisy College Station to take on an improved Aggies squad. Kentucky is finally getting its stuff together under HC Mark Stoops. A&M QB Kellen Mond is much improved under the guidance of new HC Jimbo Fisher. Can the Wildcats keep on winning and set up a potential SEC East deciding showdown with mighty Georgia? Will the Aggies pull off the upset and ruin those plans?

Kentucky prospects to watch

1. Josh Allen 6’4 230 EDGE Senior

- Allen has been rising up the boards this season. He’s a pretty good athlete for the position and should test well. Flashed a ton of potential over the past few weeks. Can set the edge and play the run well. Not the most fundamentally sound but is improving.

2. Benny Snell 5’10 223 RB Junior

- Snell is probably the most underrated running back in the country due to the depth of the class and the program he plays for. A physical power back that can pound the rock at least 30 times without fatigue. Pass blocking is a plus. Vision and IQ are a plus as well. Rarely has yards for loss on his resume.

Texas A&M prospect to watch

1. Daylon Mack 6’0 320 DL Senior

- Mack is finally a senior this year. Hasn’t really lived up to his five star billing but that could be placed at the feet of an incompetent coaching staff. Has been a breath of fresh air as a senior thus far under the tutelage of DC Mike Elko. A physical force in the middle of the line. Underrated athlete. Power is the name of his game.

#8 Auburn at Mississippi State 7:30 PM ESPN2

- A defensive battle? What? These two offenses have been struggling mightily this year for some reason when expectations were much higher. Which offense will turn it around before the meat of the SEC schedule comes due? Miss State has a new HC in former Penn State HC Joe Moorehead. Auburn by 14+.

Auburn prospects to watch

1. Jarrett Stidham 6’2 214 QB RS Junior

- Stidham is one of the top ranked quarterbacks in a class in which the perception is generally down. He has a lot of arm talent and can make virtually any throw asked of him. Physically looks the part. The biggest flaw is the program that he chose. Auburn’s offensive system is very poor in terms of development for the next level. Fundamentally poor as the reads are so simple that a high school QB can thrive in Auburn’s system. Will need a ton of development time as a backup before he can start. Oblivious to pressure and will give up unnecessary sacks to elite defenses.

2. Derrick Brown 6’5 325 DL Junior

- He lives in the opponents’ backfield every game. One of the best interior linemen in the SEC. Academics are on point as he’s been named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll every year. Could be one of the more underrated DL prospects due to the talent in the class.

Mississippi State prospects to watch

1. Jeffery Simmons 6’3 301 DT Junior

- DT2. He’s one of the best defensive tackles in the country and should declare as a junior. A beast in the middle that can impact games. A power game. Capable pass rusher with an arsenal of moves. Best DT not named Ed Oliver. He’s that good.

2. Montez Sweat 6’5 241 EDGE Senior

- Don’t burn those Sweat Titans jerseys yet, Justin Graver. We have another Sweat named edge defender that’s one of the best in the nation. A fundamentally sound pass and run defender. Athleticism is a plus. Character and work ethic are a plus as well. He’s one of the best in a strong DL class.

Bonus games to watch

Northwestern at #20 Michigan State NOON FS1

Missouri at South Carolina NOON SEC Network

Arizona State at #21 Colorado 4:00 PM Pac-12 Network

#6 Notre Dame at #24 Virginia Tech 8 PM ABC

Where are the Titans’ scouts today?