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Looking ahead to 2010 prospects

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Scouting college talent for the NFL is a never-ending process. The books are closed on the 2009 NFL Draft and the process of scouting players for next April's event is in full swing. Here's a list of the top draft eligible players who have the potential to impact the 2010 draft. (*denotes underclassman)

1) Greg Hardy/DE/Mississippi: Hardy gave serious consideration to entering April's draft but made the right choice staying in school. He's impacts the game in a variety of ways and possesses unlimited potential.

2) Taylor Mays/S/USC: Mays was another who made the choice to play another season on the college level. He reminds many of former Trojan great Ronnie Lott.

3) Jermaine Gresham/TE/Oklahoma: Gresham is a receiver in a tight end body. He's an athletic freak of who will be a weapon for any offense.

4) Sam Bradford*/QB/Oklahoma: Bradford made the right choice staying in school, where he'll have another season to hone his passing skills.

5) Russell Okung/OT/Oklahoma State: Okung is a complete tackle who stands out in pass protection while dominating as a run blocker.

6) Gerald McCoy*/DT/Oklahoma: Sooners fans look at McCoy and see former OU star Tommie Harris. And like his predecessor, McCoy will be a first-round pick.

7) Mark Herzlich/OLB/Boston College: Herzlich rounded out his game last season and developed into a terrific three-down defender who dominates in all areas.

8) Ndamukong Suh/DT/Nebraska: Suh had a breakout campaign last year, emerging as the most suffocating defender in the Big 12. He's a terrific athlete and a very good football player.

9) Carlos Dunlap*/DE/Florida: Dunlap is a tall but slightly undersized defensive end who makes a lot of plays behind the line of scrimmage. He has the tools to make a big move up draft boards.

10) Terrence Cody/DT/Alabama: Mount Cody burst onto the scene last year and helped turn Alabama's defense into one of the nation's best. He's a dominant, inside mauler who must control his weight.

11) Trent Williams/OT/Oklahoma: Williams is a tall, athletic tackle with potential on the left or right side.

12) Arrileous Benn/WR/Illinois: Benn is a game-controlling wideout with reliable hands and solid speed.

13) Brandon Spikes/ILB/Florida: Spikes could be the most dominant Gators linebacker to enter the NFL in more than a decade.

14) Dez Bryant*/WR/Oklahoma State: Oklahoma State's top pass catcher has the ability to pick up big yardage after the reception.

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15) Eric Berry*/S/Tennessee: Berry lacks the classic size for a centerfielder, yet offers a complete game in the secondary.

16) Jonathan Dwyer*/RB/Georgia Tech: Tech's powerful, interior ball carrier shows surprising speed in the open field. He offers potential as a feature back.

17) Corey Wootton/DE/Northwestern: Prior to the knee injury he suffered in Northwestern's bowl game, Wooton was considered first-round material for the '09 draft.

18) Rolando McClain*/LB/Alabama: McClain is a nice combination of size and athleticism and has the skill to be used at a variety of linebacker spots.

19) George Selvie/DE/South Florida: Selvie comes off a disappointing season, but is still one of the nation's best pass rushers and an NFL prospect in the mold of Simeon Rice.

20) DeMarcus Granger/DT/Oklahoma: Another talented Sooners defender, Granger returns to the field in '09 after struggling with injury last season.

21) Sergio Kindle/LB/Texas: Kindle is an explosive linebacker who makes plays sideline-to-sideline besides showing skill in pass coverage.

22) Joe Haden*/CB/Florida: The Gators top cornerback offers size and the ability to consistently shut down opponents.

23) Marvin Austin*/DT/North Carolina: Austin is an explosive one-gap lineman who constantly disrupts the action behind the line of scrimmage.

24) Trevard Lindley/CB/Kentucky: Lindley has been a productive starter the past two seasons, but must start to show more progress on the field.

25) C.J. Spiller/RB-RS/Clemson: Spiller has the speed and elusiveness to be a big-time producer in the NFL as a running back or return specialist. Scouts question his toughness, but with James Davis moving on, Spiller now has an opportunity to quell the criticism.

26) Geno Atkins/DT/Georgia: Atkins is an explosive one-gap tackle yet has many questioning his 6-foot-1, 287-pound frame.

27) Javier Arenas/CB/Alabama: The Tide's top returning defensive back, Arenas has shown consistent improvement the past two seasons. He also can return kicks.

28) Brandon Graham/DE/Michigan: Graham's size (6-2, 270) is a limiting factor, yet the Wolverines lineman is a good football player.

29) Damian Williams*/WR/USC: Williams could be one of the few game-breaking receivers in next year's draft.

30) Tim Tebow/QB/Florida: Tebow has the size, arm strength and maturity to lead a franchise, but scouts wonder about his ability to play in a disciplined NFL offense.

31) Arthur Jones/DT/Syracuse: Jones is a dominant interior lineman who takes over games. He could be a first-round choice with a big senior season.

32) Jevan Snead*/QB/Mississippi: Snead did a terrific job leading the Rebels last season and his skills caught the attention of NFL scouts.

33) Brandon Lang/DE-OLB/Troy State: Drawing comparisons to former Troy State star DeMarcus Ware, Lang is an undersized college defensive end with potential as a rush linebacker.

34) Sean Weatherspoon/OLB/Missouri: Weatherspoon is a smallish, yet explosive weak side linebacker with potential in a number of systems.

35) Vince Oghobaase/DL/Duke: The Blue Devils have not had a player selected in the first two rounds of the draft for more than a decade. Oghobaase could be a top 32 choice.

36) Auston English/DE/Oklahoma: He's a terrific pass rusher who returns to the field after an injury last season.

37) Kam Chancellor/S/Virginia Tech: Chancellor has the size of a linebacker and intimidates all who cross his path.

38) Jerry Hughes/OLB-DE/TCU: Hughes is another undersized defensive end who'll transition to outside linebacker in the NFL.

39) Brandon LaFell/WR/LSU: LaFell enters '09 as the top senior receiver prospect. He's a terrific possession wideout with reliable hands.

40) Sean Lee/LB/Penn State: Lee has more potential than many of the recent linebackers to come from Penn State (Paul Posluszny and Dan Connor). Scouts will take a wait-and-see approach as he returns from a knee injury that sidelined him in 2008.

41) Ciron Black/OT/LSU: Black offers tremendous size and will be an early pick if he polishes his game.

42) Ricky Sapp/OLB-DE/Clemson: Sapp looked like a star in the making as a sophomore, but was beset with injury last year.

43) Brandon Ghee*/CB/Wake Forest: Ghee offers tremendous size and skill. He is now the leader of the Wake Forest secondary and big things are expected.

44) Matt Tennant/C/Boston College: The Eagles have put plenty of talented blockers in the NFL and Tennant has the potential to be great.

45) Dennis Pitta/TE/BYU: Pitta is the next in the very long line of accomplished BYU tight ends to impact the draft.