The first weekend in October on the college football schedule sees an ever-expanding game count and several prospects and match-ups to key on. We’ll be here all day breaking down the Week 5 college football games today, giving opinions on prospects and occasionally dropping news — so don’t travel far! Information on how and where to watch, which includes kickoff times and the TV schedule, can be found below.
All of the live Week 5 analysis, opinions, and breaking news will get underway at noon and wrap up after midnight ET in our College Football Live Game Day Blog, which is below the TV schedule. Be sure to also keep up with NFL Draft stories and analysis from the PFN NFL Draft Crew.
Click the dropdown tab above to view the schedule for all of the college football games today in Week 5. Find out what time each game kicks off along with the channel they will be broadcast on.
College Football Today: Week 5 Live Blog with Tony Pauline, AJ Schulte, Matt Valdovinos, and Nick Farabaugh
Updates for college football games today through midnight ET will be timestamped once we kick off at noon and each update will be followed by the initials of the analyst. “AS” is AJ Schulte, “MV” is Matt Valdovinos, “NF” is Nick Farabaugh, and if there are no initials, it’s me (Tony Pauline).
Kenny Pickett improving his draft stock (12:00 AM)
Earlier on the day, Pitt suffered a 30-29 loss to NC State, but it was not because of their quarterback Kenny Pickett. Pickett came into the season with NFL aspirations and the improvements in his game are already making this a reality. His arm has more touch and velocity than we have ever seen before. In terms of his mobility, Pickett can make something out of nothing in a pinch.
The pocket movement is still an issue, as he can sometimes bail on clean pockets. In addition, he does still have some spotty decison-making at times. However, he may have been Pitt’s best player today, period. Airing it out all day, Pickett is showing he has the goods to be an NFL quarterback. I expect to see Pickett in Mobile this January. NF
Marlon Williams could be next UCF wide receiver drafted (11:50 PM)
Gabriel Davis and Breshad Perriman have been some of the UCF receivers that have been drafted, but UCF has another impressive receiver in Marlon Williams. Williams was second on the team only behind Davis last year in receiving yards and had an astounding 17 targets today in UCF’s loss to Tulsa.
With nine receptions for 98 yards, Williams was yet again extremely productive on the game. He already opened the season with two 100-yard receiving games. Williams is the definition of sure-handed and brings in a lot of balls that are on the outer edges of his catch radius. He is simply tough, dependable, and savvy out there in his routes and at the catch point. Those are great traits to have for any receiver. Williams is only helping his stock tonight. NF
Zach Smith is a gamer (11:35 PM)
Tulsa is in the driver’s seat to pull off what would be a stunning upset over UCF. Their quarterback Zach Smith is exactly who they can point to for their success on the offensive side of the football. Smith fought and clawed back from a double-digit deficient with an array of big plays through the air.
Smith’s touch on the deep ball has been impressive today. When he is throwing outside of the hashes, Smith has a knack for either putting the ball right on the back shoulder of his receivers or throwing it right into their breadbasket. Even more impressive has been the anticipation he has thrown with. Smith has legitimately thrown guys open at times. While he has not been perfect tonight, Smith has put up a gutsy, tough performance that includes lots of impressive throws while getting hit all night. After an extremely rough start, his perseverance is notable. NF
Iowa State TE Charlie Kolar stands out (11:20 PM)
The top three tight ends are very clearly Kyle Pitts, Pat Freiermuth, and Brevin Jordan, but the competition for that fourth guy has to be talked about as well. Iowa State tight end Charlie Kolar is making an extremely strong case to be that guy right now.
Kolar is sure-handed, tough, and a physical mismatch over the middle of the field. Putting him up against linebackers is a problem, and Oklahoma has found that out today. Kolar has put up four receptions for 66 receiving yards on the day. If you want a guy to go up and get in traffic, Kolar is that guy. He is not the most athletic guy, and he has a lot of muscle to still add to his frame, which is encouraging for his ever-improving blocking. Kolar looks like a solid day two draft pick as it stands. NF
Mike Rose having a tremendous day (11:10 PM)
Iowa State has to be pleased with how their defense has clamped down on what is supposed to be a high octane offense in Oklahoma. The biggest catalyst of this effort has been standout linebacker Mike Rose.
Rose had a big-time interception last week, and this week he is back at it again. With a huge timely sack in the fourth quarter, 1.5 TFL, and nine tackles today, Rose is all over the field against the Sooners today. Rose is one of the most physical linebackers in the country and has the all-around goods to be a legitimate starter in the NFL. While he lacks elite athleticism, he can make up for it with elite instincts and his leadership. Rose is a player who will be drafted late and could turn into a gem. At the very least, Rose is the type of guy you want to lead your special teams unit. NF
K.J. Costello struggles on the day (11:00 PM)
After K.J. Costello’s impressive performance against LSU last week, he has shown some cracks this week that prove he is not fully NFL ready just yet. The dimes have all been there. In fact, a crazy touchdown throw off his back foot was incredibly impressive today. However, three interceptions are a really bad stat for Costello. That now brings seven total turnovers to Costello to begin the season.
Costello’s decision-making will always be his Achilles heel. It was the issue back at Stanford and continues to be the issue now at Mississippi State. When Arkansas got some penetration and pressured Costello, he broke down and made errant decisions. Sometimes, Costello just has to learn to throw the football away. Costello’s odd pocket movement into pressure and decison-making, will be a combination that will hurt his ranking among scouts. NF
Brock Purdy having an up and down day (10:50 PM)
Brock Purdy has led Iowa State to a tie game with Oklahoma right now. While his leadership and clutch qualities will be on display down the stretch, thus far, it is has been a nerve-racking day for Cyclones fans who watched Purdy. There have been some magical plays that Purdy has executed. A few ‘wow’ plays that showed his NFL potential.
However, Purdy’s processing and accuracy have been all over the place as well. While he has no interceptions on the stat sheet, there were at least three or four balls that could have been interceptions. They were not good decisions and Purdy has to read a defense much better than he did today. His pocket management is modest at best. At times, he fails to feel pressure, but other times, he sees ghosts and runs into pressure himself. Purdy has promise, but today will not move the needle that much. NF
Zaven Collins having an impressive day for Tulsa (10:40 PM)
Tulsa is currently in a close matchup with UCF on the night, and part of why they are so close is their defense. WILL linebacker Zaven Collins has been perhaps the most impressive player on the Golden Hurricanes defense tonight. With impressive athleticism, fluidity, and football IQ, Collins has the tools to be a high-quality NFL Draft riser.
I had a fourth-round grade on Collins in the summer, but he has the potential to improve on that. With 2.5 Tackles for Loss, an interception, a caused safety, and a quarterback hit today, Collins has been all over the field. In his first three quarters of the year, Collins has racked up 6.5 tackles for loss. Collins is a sleeper that fans should get to know, he has been all over the screen today. NF
Off night for Marshall? (10:30 PM)
Granted most receivers would be happy with two receptions for 66 yards and two TD’s. But coming off the heels of eight catches, 122 receiving yards, and two TD’s against Mississippi State a week ago, tonight’s numbers seem pedestrian.
All kidding aside, Marshall has really elevated his game after Ja’Marr Chase deiced to opt out and the junior has affirmed he’s a day two prospect. TP
The dawning of another Otis Anderson (10:10 PM)
Say the name Otis Anderson and New York Giant fans from 30 years ago will smile. So too will present day UCF fans as, despite contracting styles, the new version of Otis Anderson is just as explosive and productive.
When the explosive UCF offense is not annihilating opponents through the air, they are doing it on the ground, as displayed by Anderson this evening. His numbers thus far tonight include 81 yards on 16 carries, including a big run he broke off for a 41 yard score.
Anderson is a smaller third down back who can score from any point on the field. He considered entering last April’s draft but made the right choice and returned for another season. He’s more of a late round prospect, unless he blisters in the forty and a team falls in love with his home run hitting speed. TP
Lawrence & the offense- what else is there to say? (9:25 PM)
It shouldn’t be this easy for the Clemson offense against what is a solid Virginia defense- but here we are with a 24-3 score as the half is about to close out.
Lawrence has been methodical picking apart the Cavaliers, Travis Etienne has been impossible to tackle and Amari Rodgers is making people forget Justyn Ross is shelved this season with injury. And while Lawrence and Etienne will be early picks, Rodgers is the one who draws the most diverse array of grades from scouts.
He’s been graded as early as a fourth round prospect by the league while other scouts stamp him as a middle of the road PFA. I graded Rodgers as a fifth round prospect and feel he’ll be a nice addition as a fourth wide out/return specialist for an NFL team. TP
CB Campbell also standing out for the Dawgs (9:15 PM)
Entering the season I graded cornerback Tyson Campbell as a fifth round prospect but that will have to change as the Georgia junior has shown terrific development in his game.
Campbell has outstanding size and speed but his ball skills and instincts needed to improve. Based on tonight it’s easy to see both have been elevated. Campbell has made several outstanding plays defending throws as well as stopping ball handlers. He has a great upside and is headed for the middle rounds, possibly earlier. TP
Yet another highly rated UGA linebacker leading the way (9 PM)
Georgia is putting a whoopin’ on Auburn and defense has led the way. Linebacker Monty Rice, who’s highly considered in the scouting community, has been all over the field making plays and leading the way. Rice has shown tremendous range and speed in pursuit, gets depth on his pass drops but also plays smart, disciplined football.
He’s a day two pick who could end up in the top half of the second round.
Round one to the Dawgs (8:25 PM)
In today’s preview, I highlighted the Auburn-Georgia match up, concentrating on Seth Williams versus the talented Georgia secondary. Round one goes to UGA, who has shut down the Auburn offense.
The Tigers have just three receptions thus far, none caught by Williams. TP
K.J. Costello has some wow moments!! (8:10 PM)
Last week I was critical of Costello’s ball security; specifically the interceptions he throws. He stuck it to me and orchestrated a terrific comeback as Mississippi State upset LSU.
Costello showed a lot of ability and made some outstanding throws the past three years, many of which mirror the touchdown pass he just tossed. Costello’s pass in the back of the end zone was the definition of throwing a receiver open. He escaped the rush, found his target, then put the ball out front and let the receiver run laterally to the ball.
I absolutely see Costello being invited to the SeniorBowl in January. TP
Razorback DT Marshall flashing skill (8:05 PM)
Arkansas defensive tackle Jonathan Marshall shows flashes of ability and plenty of upside. He plays with terrific pad level, easily moves around the field, and plays hard. The problem is Marshall tips the scale under 300 pounds but lines up on the nose in the Razorbacks alignment.
I don’t know he gets draft, but Marshall has enough ability to be brought into a camp as a conventional defensive tackle or potentially an end is a 3-4. TP
Little known small school signal-caller building a buzz (7:55 PM)
Another small-school quarterback, Bailey Zappe of Houston Baptist, is starting to gain traction in the scouting community. Listed as a riser in Monday’s column, Zappe followed up his performance of 406 passing yards and 5 TD’s against Louisiana Tech last Saturday with 380 passing yards and 3 TD’s against Eastern Kentucky today.
In four games into the season, his stats line reads 1,453 yards passing with 12 TD’s and 1 INT. Height/weight is an issue though Louisiana Tech coaches tell me Zappe is bigger than the 6-foot-1-inch, 190 pounds he’s estimated to be. The way people are talking, I could envision Zappe getting an invite to the Shrine Game, which would be significant. TP
Don’t flip out over Lance today (7:40 PM)
Don’t read too much into the disappointing performance by North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance today. The much-anticipated return to the field, in what’s going to be the only game the program plays this season, resulted in a 39-28 victory over Central Arkansas, whose record now stands at 2-2.
Lance was 15 of 30 passing for 149 yards with two TDs and one INT. He did not look sharp. Scouts are not going to put much weight in this performance considering this was a one-off game this season for NDSU against a team playing their fourth game – I’ve confirmed that already with a number of scouts.
Word on the street is Lance will enter the 2021 draft and has already agreed for representation with a major agency. I’ve not been told when the public announcement will be made. Unlike others, I don’t grade Lance as a top ten prospect, more like a bottom half of round one. But he is talented and he is a quarterback, which means he’ll likely be selected early next April. TP
Elijah Moore’s the most electric 2021 sleeper. (7:20 PM)
With the NFL moving to an era of volume passing predicated on getting the ball to playmakers in space, I expect to see WR’s who can make plays with the ball in their hands grow in value through the eyes of NFL front offices. Ole Miss’ WR Elijah Moore fits that role to a T. He’s an elite athlete who dominates after the catch and brings value as a return man. Moore has flown under the radar so far, but don’t be surprised if an NFL team takes him on Day 2 with a clear intent to get the ball in his hands early in his career. – MV
Is Mac Jones a legit NFL prospect? (7:00 PM)
Mac Jones has looked excellent through Alabama’s first two games. He’s displayed accuracy to all levels of the field, and he’s already developed a very nice chemistry with the Alabama receivers. He has the requisite arm strength and size to be an NFL quarterback. Jones has now thrown 21 touchdowns to four interceptions. Could an excellent season from Jones be enough to vault him into the QB4 conversation for the 2021 NFL Draft? – MV
Is Chuba Hubbard even a Top 5 RB in 2021? (6:45 PM)
Chuba Hubbard was at one point viewed by some as a first-round prospect; some still view him as the running back in a loaded 2021 class. Despite him having the best game of the season, I’m not convinced he should be a consensus Top 5 back in the class. Especially when you considered players like Najee Harris, Travis Etienne, and Kylin Hill all should’ve been drafted last year but chose to return for their senior season like Hubbard.
In a very saturated position group, Hubbard fails to stand out in my eyes. It’s easy to see his production and think of him as an elite rusher, but as most talent evaluators will tell you: you should never scout a player via the box score. Hubbard lacks any separating physical traits that would allow him to stand-out amongst the players in this class. He’s rarely used on passing downs, and he doesn’t possess the ability to create yardage for himself. He can be a productive early-down back on an NFL team with a strong offensive line, but I don’t think he’ll ever be a true weapon at the next level. – MV
Hunter Long; The secret Gem of a loaded TE class? (6:25 PM)
Everyone wants to talk about Kyle Pitts, Brevin Jordan, and Pat Freiermuth. Rightfully so, the 2021 tight end class looks like one of the best groups we’ve had come out in quite a while. However, there’s a fourth tight end that some believe should be considered on the level of the others.
I’m, of course, talking about Boston College’s Hunter Long. Long registered 509 receiving yards last season on a dominant 18.9 yards per reception. This year he’s been producing at an astounding level with games of 93 and 81 yards to start the season, and he’s registered 74 yards in three quarters today. Even if he doesn’t register another reception today, he’s on pace to be one of the most productive tight ends in the nation this year. – MV
Jaylen Waddle, the best of Alabama’s WRs? (6:00 PM)
Alabama has become a WR factory for the NFL. In the decade of 2010-2020, they produced seven receivers that were selected in the NFL Draft, five of which were first-round selections. The most recent of the selections being Henry Ruggs III and Jerry Jeudy, who were selected twelfth and fifteenth, respectively, in the 2020 NFL Draft. Those two wide-outs happened to be on the same team as potential 2021 first rounders Jaylen Waddle and DeVonta Smith. Which of this group is the best will be a long-standing argument, throughout the next decade or so.
My guess right now is that Waddle will be the best when it’s all said and done. He’s the most electric with the ball in his hands, and his athletic ability rivals Ruggs for the best of the quartet. Waddle is also a well developed route runner and, despite lacking elite size, is a strong contested-catch receiver as well. With the most versatile and well-rounded skill-set, expect Waddle to be an early draft pick in the 2021 NFL Draft and to be a very productive player in the NFL. – MV
Kansas-just what the doctor ordered for Chuba & Tylan (5:45 PM)
After a slow start to the season for Oklahoma State RB Chuba Hubbard and WR Tylan Wallace, the hapless and struggling Kansas Jayhawks arrived just in time to help them rebound. Hubbard has 145 yards rushing and two touchdowns, and Tylan Wallace has 148 yards receiving and two touchdowns on nine catches. It’s been a good day at the office for the Cowboys, up 38-0 on the Jayhawks.
However, Ok State LB Amen Ogbongbemiga was escorted off the field with an injury just minutes ago. Amen is graded within my top-150 prospects and is a key part of the Pokes’ defense, so hopefully, his injury is not serious. -AS
Auburn-UGA halftime preview (5:25 PM)
The premier matchup for this evening will be the Auburn-Georgia game. Keep an eye on Auburn WRs Seth Williams and Anthony Schwartz against the Georgia CB duo of Eric Stokes and Tyson Campbell. Williams and Schwartz are like Thunder and Lightning, with Williams’ outstanding catch radius and length and Schwartz’s deep speed. Campbell’s athleticism will be necessary to keep up with Schwartz and prevent a big play.
UGA has a couple of trench players to keep an eye on as well. Defensive tackle Jordan Davis is a game-wrecker in the middle for the Dawgs and will look to have a big game against an Auburn OL that saw Bo Nix pressured on almost half of his dropbacks last week against Kentucky. I’m a fan of UGA’s center Trey Hill as well, and he’ll have a tough matchup against Auburn’s Big Kat Bryant and Tyrone Truesdell. All three of them have Day 3 grades from me in the summer, but this game will be a premier scouting battle.
Lance’s struggles make scouts’ jobs much harder (5:15 PM)
Trey Lance’s season exhibition game against Central Arkansas has not gone as planned for him. After starting 1-of-6, Lance has since gone 5-of-10, but only has 47 yards passing and the one touchdown. He’s missed three deep throws that would have gone for touchdowns, a staggering drop from his 65% completion rate on throws over 20+ yards last year. The NDSU offense has been largely stagnant all game long.
In my article about Lance, I mentioned how coaches and execs will love his talent, but the inexperience and the development Lance will need might make scouts and executives wary of drafting him super high in the 2021 NFL Draft. So far, his showing against Central Arkansas is doing very little to alleviate those concerns in this game. He needs to rebound in the second half. -AS
Najee Harris is the best RB in the 2021 NFL Draft (4:50 PM)
I know that the running back position has become the butt of many jokes, but Alabama RB Najee Harris is the real deal as a runner and receiver. His vision and power as a runner look like the typical power back that Bama always produces, but he also has a lot of traits in the open-field that give him an additional boost. While he isn’t the speedster that Clemson RB Travis Etienne is, he has plenty of athletic ability to offer. For a 6’2 220 pound back, Harris is a standout receiver as well. He produced a highlight-reel catch over Patrick Queen last season and just made another one against this Aggies’ defense to set up yet another touchdown for him this game. I would not be surprised to see him take the Doak Walker Award this season on his way to being a first-round draft pick. -AS
Pro potential of A&M QB Kellen Mond (4:35 PM)
According to Tony Pauline, Texas A&M QB Mond has grades anywhere from the second round to the fourth round, and the polarization is evident with his play. Mond has a lot of tools from a physical standpoint but has really struggled with the mental side of the game. A lot of the pro concepts Jimbo Fisher is known for have been a struggle for Mond, but he finds a way to make a jaw-dropping throw or two in every game of his career. I’d imagine he’ll be a Day 3 developmental project for some coach when he decides to declare. A good showing against Bama today would go a long way in solidifying his pro stock. -AS
FCS Quarterbacks on display this afternoon (4:15 PM)
Jacksonville State takes on Florida State at the same time North Dakota State and Central Arkansas kick-off. Keep an eye on JVU QB Zerrick Cooper, a former Clemson QB, against the Noles much-maligned defense this week.
All scouts’ eyes are on North Dakota State QB Trey Lance, who has so far had a rough showing against Central Arkansas. In the first three drives, NDSU had a three-and-out, a fumble, and then was forced to punt. Lance is only 1-of-6 for 14 yards right now through the air. He has to turn this game around in front of all the NFL scouts. -AS
No Tua, No problem for the Crimson Tide (4:05 PM)
Tua Tagovailoa is now a Miami Dolphin, but the Alabama offense keeps on humming. Mac Jones has looked really impressive taking the reigns. He got the game started by dropping a phenomenal deep pass to WR John Metchie. Mac Jones isn’t as naturally gifted as Tua, but he throws the ball well with good touch and accuracy at each level of the field. While he likely won’t push for a first-round pick, Mac Jones could push to be selected on Day 2 if he continues this high level of play. I would not be surprised to see him play in Mobile for the Senior Bowl. -AS
Key afternoon matchups to keep an eye on (3:55 PM)
Keep an eye on the Alabama offensive line against the Texas A&M defensive line. Despite losing Justin Madubuike to the NFL Draft, the Aggies return a stout group up front on defense. Pay particular attention to the matchup between the Alabama offensive tackles and A&M’s high-upside EDGE Michael Clemons. Clemons posted 1.5 sacks last week against Vanderbilt and will need to bring his A-game to pressure Mac Jones, who was pressured just three times last week.
Boston College tight end Hunter Long already has two catches on BC’s opening drive. His matchup against North Carolina LB Chazz Surratt will be a critical matchup that will carry Boston College’s offense through this game. Keep an eye on the Boston College offensive line as well-one of the few offensive lines that boasts four draftable prospects.
The SMU-Memphis game boasts one of the best WR-CB battles of the day that’s flying under the radar. SMU WRs Reggie Roberson and Danny Gray both have draftable grades from me, and they will be matching up against Memphis CB TJ Carter, a premier man-to-man corner. Carter is a potential Day 2 pick, come the 2021 NFL Draft. -AS
Angeline playing well again (3:25 PM)
When it comes to the tight end position, Cary Angeline of North Carolina State is rarely mentioned in scouting circles, though he’s someone I’ve written about previously.
Angeline just caught his second touchdown pass of the day, helping draw the Wolfpack to a 24-23 lead over Pittsburgh. Angeline is a throwback of sorts as he’s not a move tight end who splits the seam and makes a lot of plays down the field. Rather he’s a sure-handed short to intermediate-range target who also gets results blocking.
I doubt Angeline is drafted next April, but I believe he has enough talent to make a Sunday roster as a third tight end.
The younger Stills on fire! (3:10 PM)
Earlier I mentioned the play of William Bradley-King from the Baylor- West Virginia game, a close contest coming down to the wire. It’s also been a stellar game for WVU defensive tackle Darius Stills. As we move into the opening moments of the final quarter, Stills has totaled four tackles, 3.5 TFL’s and 2.5 sacks.
The senior is a quick, explosive interior lineman who plays with a warrior mentality. The issue for Stills is a lack of size and growth potential as he measures barely 6-feet tall and 280 pounds. His grades in the scouting community are as early as the fifth round to as late as PFA. Stills is one of those prospects who will have to have a position created for him at the next level versus being a plug and play type of lineman.
Changes in the wind for the NFLPA Game? (2:40 PM)
Many of us are waiting on word about what will happen with the post-season All-Star Games; the Shrine Bowl, Senior Bowl, and NFLPA Game. Truth be told, it could be an extended wait as there really is no reason to make a hasty decision.
The NFLPA Game, played in southern California which creates obstacles in and by itself, is probing turning the event into a few days of practice and scrapping the game. This makes a lot of sense from a scouting perspective.
Granted this is just speculation at this point but noteworthy.
Sleeper pass rusher can be found at Baylor (2:20 PM)
Baylor and West Virginia are locked up in an unusually low scoring battle. One player that’s looked impressive during two and a half quarters is William Bradley-King, a graduate transfer who came to Baylor by way of Arkansas State.
Five minutes into the second half Bradley-King has already accumulated two TFL’s, one sack, 1 PBU, and a forced fumble. The senior is a tall, athletic edge rusher effective standing over tackle or out of a three-point stance. Though Bradley-King has a sixth-round grade on my board, some scouts grade him as a late day two prospect.
TCU offensive lineman Austin Myers looking solid (1:55 PM)
It’s been an entertaining first half between TCU and Texas as this back and forth affair moves towards halftime. TCU left tackle Austin Myers has been reasonably effective protecting the blind side. He’s quick, mobile, and blocks with proper fundamentals. He’s not the strongest blocker but very effective in motion.
I handed Myers a PFA grade over the summer though I placed him on my guard board. Myers fits in a zone-blocking scheme at the next level.
Smith, Jordan this time, continues to impress (1:25 PM)
UTSA and UAB are facing off in a little-noticed but very important C-USA matchup, as both teams are undefeated in conference play during the early goings.
Week 3 riser linebacker Jordan Smith continues to impress. He has one tackle for loss and one sack to his credit as the first quarter closed out. I’ve mentioned several times that Smith, who’s just a junior, is leaning towards entering next April’s draft. He’s presently graded as a Day 2 pick on my board.
CC surprising many (1:15 PM)
Coastal Carolina is 2-0 and presently leading Arkansas State 17-14 as we move toward the midway point of the second quarter.
As the school known more for being on the way to Myrtle Beach than for its football program, they have several next-level prospects led by defensive end Tarron Jackson, three times named as an All-Conference player.
Jackson is a fluid and mobile defensive end with growth potential and solid pass-rushing moves. He’s already totaled three tackles, one tackle for loss, and one sack, as well as one QB hit today. Scouts have graded him as a potential late-round pick, and he’s looking every bit of that today.
Shi Smith — Right on cue (1:05 PM)
I mentioned Smith earlier and right on cue, he gets into the end zone for a score which ties the South Carolina-Florida contest. His stats presently read four receptions, 21 yards, and one touchdown.
The Gamecocks have placed quality receivers into the draft recently and though he won’t be as highly-rated as the others, Smith’s game projects well to the next level. He’ll be a real good number four/slot receiver that can also be used as a return specialist.
Sam Ehlinger can be super impressive (12:55 PM)
You can’t help but be impressed by UT quarterback Sam Ehlinger. On a third and 15, he connected on a deep pass, only to have the play called back due to offensive pass interference. He comes back on the next snap, third and 25, to connect over the middle for a first down.
His poise, ability to make a number of throws, and especially pass placement, is really impressive.
Keep an eye on the USC offense (12:35 PM)
Everyone in the scouting world is pumped about the Gators’ “Kyles” — Pitts and Trask — but South Carolina has some legitimate next-level prospects on offense.
Senior receiver Shi Smith, who had a great game last week, is universally graded as a Day 3 pick. Tight end Nicholas Muse is graded in the middle rounds and I really like left tackle Dylan Wonnum, who I presently grade as a mid fourth-round player.
Eyes on Sam Ehlinger as Texas takes on TCU at noon
An interstate rivalry in Texas starts off the college football games today with a noon kickoff as TCU travels to Austin to face the Longhorns. UT quarterback Sam Ehlinger has been red hot the past two weeks and engineered a late comeback against Texas Tech last Saturday to force the game into overtime, a game the Longhorns eventually won.
Related | Pauline’s 2020 Big 12 Preseason Summer Scouting Preview
Ehlinger faces one of the better safety combos in the nation against TCU. Trevon Moehrig is a hard-hitting junior and an opportunistic defensive back who makes a lot of plays on the ball. His teammate Ar’Darius Washington is smaller but plays the safety spot like a cornerback.
Jacksonville State tight end Trae Barry a sleeper for 2021 NFL Draft
Florida State, whose troubles this season have been well documented, faces Jacksonville State this afternoon. I expect the Seminoles to lay down a whooping, and ordinarily most would not pay attention to this contest, but Jacksonville State offers one of the top sleepers at the tight end position.
Off the 2018 JSU film, I gave Trae Barry — then a sophomore — a fourth-round grade. He’s a tall, fluid pass-catching tight end who looks as though he should be on the basketball court. Barry started hot in 2019 before being sidelined for the season with a knee injury. Due to the ongoing health situation, Jacksonville State has just four games on the schedule this fall. This is the most important one for Barry to prove he’s not only back from last year’s injury, but that he can hang with better competition.
Auburn WR Seth Williams will look to impress against strong Georgia secondary
Auburn at Georgia is a matchup that scouts will be closely monitoring in college football today. Auburn junior receiver Seth Williams’ performance against Kentucky justified a spot as a riser in the Week 3 NFL Draft stock report, but it’s going to be a different challenge against the Bulldogs.
Related | Pauline’s 2020 SEC Preseason Summer Scouting Preview
The depth chart in the secondary for Georgia has five different defensive backs who carry draftable grades on my board, led by Davis Daniel. Daniel, who had a terrific outing last week, is graded as an early fourth-round pick on my board, followed soon after by safety Richard LeCounte, who almost entered last April’s draft.