The most exciting moments in college football are when underdogs unexpectedly put up a fight against a more talented opponent. The difference in talent between two given college teams can be so vast that when lower-ranked teams put up a good fight against their more highly-ranked brethren, it can seem like a victory. Several ranked teams were feeling the heat this past Saturday, as No. 1 Clemson had to be bailed out by a failed two-point conversion against UNC, Arkansas pushed No. 23 Texas A&M to the brink, and Northwestern put up quite a fight against No. 8 Wisconsin. Below are the prospects who stood out during Week 5.
TE Cheyenne O’Grady (Arkansas)
O’Grady came up huge across the middle in the Razorbacks’ game against Texas A&M. He only had three catches on the day, but they were for a team-leading 77 yards. During the game, he flashed some soft hands and his 6’4”, 256-lb frame made him an absolute load to bring down for the Aggies, and he managed to bulldoze his way to a ton of yards after initial contact. Expect to hear more about the senior as the year progresses.
RB Chuba Hubbard (Oklahoma State)
Hubbard has crashed into the conversation of “best running back prospect” with his first quarter of the season and that continued against a tough Kansas State defense this past week. The sophomore’s 25 carries for 296 yards (!!!) on the day led the nation by more than 100 yards. His patience and sixth-sense on when to hit the hole on zone runs should make him a great fit for the NFL, if he decides to come out early after this season.
S Mike Brown (Miami-Ohio)
The Red Hawks shut down UB’s albeit-limited passing attack primarily thanks to Brown’s efforts. His two interceptions on the day—one of which was returned for a touchdown—of freshman quarterback Matt Myers turned the tide against the Bulls. His pick-six in particular showed an awareness of the defensive play call, and the smarts to step in front of a quick pass instead of playing traditional coverage.
DT Khalil Davis (Nebraska)
Ohio State had their way with Nebraska but there were a couple bright spots for the Cornhuskers. One of those was the play of their big nose tackle who still managed to tear up the Buckeyes’ defense. Davis finished with five tackles, a sack, and two tackles-for-loss. He looks like a third-day prospect, but this is really good tape for the senior.
OT Trey Adams (Washington)
Adams and Washington took it to the USC defense by running it down their throat for most of the game. Adams used his size and strength to completely move defenders off the ball in the run game. He also came through in pass protection by not giving up a sack. The senior is coming back from yet another devastating injury and needs to use every opportunity he can in order to put together good tape from this point forward.
EDGE Julian Okwara (Notre Dame)
Okwara needed to turn it up a notch after producing only three tackles through his first three games. Mission accomplished against Virginia. When the Cavaliers weren’t relying on quick passes to get the ball out, Okwara was dipping around the edge creating pressure. He helped turn the tide against Virginia with the help of three sacks and two forced fumbles that were returned a long way by the defense. Just the sort of performance that can convince scouts that he still deserves to be taken in the first round.