Six things to note from the college football weekend and the significance to the pro game, as originally published in this week’s MMQB column.
1. I don’t want to sound like a homer here, but if Ohio State DE Chase Young isn’t at or near the top of every Heisman voter’s list at this point, then it says more about the award than it does him. This feels to me a lot like J.J. Watt as an NFL MVP candidate in 2014, when he was clearly the game’s best player, but didn’t win the award (he got 13 votes, second to Aaron Rodgers’ 31). Oh, and for more on Young as a prospect, check this week’s Game Plan, where he had a full scouting report—before he blew up Wisconsin’s well-regarded offensive line.
2. Christian McCaffrey’s younger brothers, Dylan and Luke, threw touchdown passes for Michigan and Nebraska, respectively, yesterday. Dylan’s a redshirt sophomore and Luke is a true freshman, and both are expected to eventually compete for the starting position at their schools.
3. It might feel early, but let’s put LSU true freshman CB Derek Stingley Jr. on your radar. The rising star was ranked No. 1 in the country among high school cornerbacks last year, he has NFL bloodlines (he’s the grandson of former Patriots WR Daryl Stingley) and the staff in Baton Rouge loves him.
“They think he’s the best player on the team,” one AFC scouting director said. “Real deal. He’ll [be drafted] super high in a couple years.”
4. While we’re here, both Stingley and LSU star safety Grant Delpit got hurt late in the 23–20 win over Auburn. Delpit is also worth watching. Some inside the program believe he’s a better prospect than Jamal Adams, who was drafted sixth overall in 2017, so his health merits monitoring from an NFL perspective. (Delpit is a different kind of safety than Adams was, by the way. He’s much more of a centerfielder type.)
5. Both Nebraska’s Scott Frost and Purdue’s Jeff Brohm had the NFL’s attention last fall as potential coaching candidates. This year, they’re a combined 3–7 in Big 10 play in the far weaker West Division, which is probably more of a reflection of how far those programs had to go all along than anything.
6. This summer when I was trying to find which defensive coach at the college level had come up with creative counterpunches to the offensive innovations in college (and therefore could be a resource to NFL coaches), a name I heard was Kansas State defensive coordinator Scott Hazelton. After watching the Kansas State defense slow Oklahoma—and the offensive mind, Lincoln Riley, who’s most fascinated NFL coaches—on Saturday was interesting. Hazelton was on the Jaguars’ staff from 2014–16, and could merit a look as a DC from NFL teams soon.
Question or comment? Email us at email@example.com.