With week six of the college football season behind us, Matt and I wanted to take a look back and give our hot takes on some of the big stories of the weekend and a quick preview of the exciting week seven games to keep a close eye on.
Paul’s Hot Takes
Tennessee defeated Georgia 38-31 but the story of the game was the injury suffered by star running back Nick Chubb. He tore his PCL and other ligaments in his knee, that will keep him sidelined for possibly over a year. Chubb, must now rehab back from this serious injury and show the NFL community that he is still worth an early investment in the 2017 NFL Draft. This injury once again will bring up the discussion that Nick Whalen and I were having on the most recent podcast, about whether rare elite players like Chubb or Leonard Fournette should sit out next season, in preparation for the draft and not risk suffering a serious injury. At this point it does not look Chubb will have that luxury, as he must now come back and show he is healthy next year.
While no one can replace Nick Chubb, the name to keep on the radar for your devy leagues and in general for the rest of the college football season is Sony Michel. He filled in for Chubb on Saturday following the injury and ran for 145 yards. At 5’11” and 212 pounds, Michel has a rare blend of size, speed and strength. Similar to how Chubb filled in for Todd Gurley last year, I expect Michel to look impressive the rest of the year in trying to make up for the loss of Chubb.
One of the best games of the weekend was #5 Utah taking on #23 California. Utah got the big win 30-24 to remain undefeated. The story of the game was about to two future NFL prospects. First for Utah, this game was all about Devontae Booker, who took the game over with 222 yards rushing, 45 yards receiving and two touchdowns. I have been a big fan of Booker since last year, and continue to think he will be a day two pick in the NFL draft next year. I think he offers versatility and can play on all three downs at the NFL level, something that is highly coveted. The other story of the game was California quarterback, Jared Goff. Goff threw for 340 yards, two touchdowns but five interceptions. As discussed on the most recent podcasts, Goff has been the only quarterback in college this season that has met expectations and separated himself from the rest, as a true first round pick. While one game will not change my take on him, it was surprising to see him struggle in this one and he will have to show better protection of the football and decision making in big games moving forward.
Dalvin Cook, who was questionable to play with an injury this past weekend for Florida State, carried his team to victory over rival Miami. Cook put on a show, rushing for 222 yards, two touchdowns, while also helping out receiving with 47 yards and another touchdown. Cook led #12 FSU to a 29-24 victory to remain unbeaten. While he has not gotten the attention of players like Chubb or Fournette, Cook is really showing that he belongs in the next tier of running backs that are draft eligible in 2017 and has an overall, well rounded skill set that NFL teams will love.
Once again TCU put on an impressive offensive performance as they beat Kansas State 52-45. Trevone Boykin and Josh Doctson once again led the way to victory. Boykin threw for 301 yards, two passing touchdowns, but also ran for 124 yards and another two touchdowns. Doctson continued to dominate as well, catching eight passes for 155 yards and two touchdowns. Both of these players continue to put up stats and Doctson in particular is starting to garner some more attention from the NFL draft guys out there. A comparison I heard from Todd Mcshay this weekend that I really liked compared Doctson to Keenan Allen. Similar to Allen, Doctson is not that athletic freak, but rather he is just really sound in all areas, knows how to run good routes create separation to get open, has good size and has strong hands.
Matt’s Hot Takes
#3 Baylor defeated Kansas 66-7 this past weekend, but the bigger story was what I saw with their star quarterback and wide receiver. Corey Coleman reminds me of Percy Harvin. While a great athlete, I do not see him as a very refined wide receiver with his overall skill set right now. He needs to refine his approach to the game including his route running. Seth Russell is a much more athletic quarterback than one may think right now. Even though right now he may not be looked upon as an elite NFL prospect, he has some skills that NFL teams may like. The Baylor offense is very multi-dimensional that can hurt you in the run and pass game. They can stretch the defense vertically and horizontally. I think they could provide a very difficult out if they make the playoffs.
In the shocker of the week, Texas defeated #10 Oklahoma 24-17. Quarterback Baker Mayfield really struggled in this one in the air raid system that Oklahoma likes to run. Wide receiver Sterling Shepard is really inconsistent at the wide receiver position, and has to improve in all areas to become a better NFL prospect. Running back Samaje Perine continues his struggles this year, but he is just not getting the carries he needs to get. I believe Perine is a very good back that is stocky, powerful, displays solid change of direction and should be one of the focal points of their offense. So far, that has not materialized this season and right now Perine has seen his value diminish in the first half of the season.
While Ohio State beat Maryland 49-20, the big story was Ohio State continuing to use the dual threat quarterback system. Ohio State used Cardale Jones from when they got the ball until they got into the red zone, where J.T. Barrett came in to try and finish the drive off. It is interesting to see how Urban Meyer is trying to use the skill sets of both of these players to his advantage. When they need to attack down the field, he wants Jones in the game, but when they get into the red zone, the running ability of Barrett opens up the playbook for some more creativity.
One of the other biggest developments is the suspension of Will Grier from Florida. He was their top freshman recruit, and he had looked impressive in the early part of the season. The loss of Grier could greatly impact the undefeated Gators season. While they still may be able to overcome the loss of Grier to win the SEC East division, their chances at making the playoffs and finishing the regular season undefeated took a major hit.
Speaking of losses, USC did not have a good week. First they lost to Washington 17-12 and then their head coach, Steve Sarkisian was put on indefinite leave, and then later fired due to him showing up at the workplace intoxicated at times. USC must now try to salvage the rest of the season, as they are 3-2, after the season started with such promise and two possible Heisman contenders in Cody Kessler and JuJu Smith-Schustser.
Week 7 games to look forward to:
#18 UCLA @ #15 Stanford
#17 Iowa @ #20 Northwestern
West Virginia @ #2 Baylor
#7 Michigan State @ #12 Michigan
#10 Alabama @ #9 Texas A&M
#8 Florida @ #6 LSU
USC @ #14 Notre Dame
Penn State @ #1 Ohio State