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2023 NFL Draft: Week 11 college football recap

The theme of the weekend is short kings

TCU v Texas Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

Despite looking rough around the edges, Week 11 of the college football season presented four ranked matchups that all finished as one-score games. One top-six team stumbled while another continued cementing themselves in the thick of the College Football Playoff conversation. Let’s talk overall takeaways from every ranked matchup from this week.

No. 9 Alabama beats No. 11 Ole Miss 30-24 in a game where the Rebels won the turnover battle and out-gained the Tide.

No. 4 TCU held off No. 18 Texas 17-10 in what was one of the most impressive defensive wins of the season by the Frogs’ defense. TCU held the best rushing tandem in the country to 43 yards on 17 carries.

The No. 25 Washington Huskies moved the ball at will against No. 6 Oregon as Washington quarterback Michael Penix had over 11 yards per attempt on the night. Oregon’s passing defense continues to be a complete liability despite having a potential first-round player in Christian Gonzalez manning the corner position.

The G5 matchup of the year between No. 17 Tulane and No. 22 UCF didn’t disappoint. The legs of Knights quarterback John Rhys Plumlee proved to be the difference of the game. He put up 176 yards on the ground and a couple of touchdowns with his legs. UCF has proven they are the best group of five team in the country this year. There certainly is no 2021 Cincinnati this season, but UCF is the best of a down group of five.

Let’s recap the afternoons of some key players from Week 11.

CB Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson (TCU) stands on his head against Texas

Hodges-Tomlinson will be justifiably questioned a lot in the pre-draft process for his size profile. However, there should be zero questions about his competitive toughness. He competes at the catch point and possesses a terrific ability to mirror and stay in phase. His zone ability and play in space is really nice for a player who lacks in length. There’s not much to nitpick about his game in general. This performance further proves that statement. Still, Hodges-Tomlinson is someone who could drop in April due to his size profile.

DT Calijah Kancey (Pitt) will be one of the most fascinating case studies in recent memory

Kancey is one of the best game wreckers from the interior that college football has seen in several years. His size (6’0”, 280 pounds) is very concerning as a player at the next level, but you can’t deny how explosive he is. Eagles defensive tackle Milton Williams is the closest thing we’ve seen to Kancey in recent memory. But Kancey has even more sack production at a higher level of college football than Williams ever had.

He has seven sacks and 14 tackles for a loss in 2022. He’s trying to be an outlier in many ways. But his explosiveness on film and ability to slide off interior pass protectors stands out. The first- and second-step ability to fire off the ball is special. But his lack of length and weight is working strongly against him as it relates to the NFL Draft.

Kancey’s three sacks against Virginia speak for themselves.

WR Zay Flowers (Boston College) continues to beat all odds stacked against him

The Boston College team as a whole has undergone a ton of injury turmoil from the offensive line to the quarterback position. Their season had folded very early on due to the amount of injuries. Quarterback Phil Jurkovec missed this past game against NC State but receiver Zay Flowers just keeps on producing. He’s putting together his best season to date in the worst situation.

Flowers is cashing in on returning for another year in what looks like one of the weaker wide receiver classes in recent memory. He went over 100 yards for the fourth time this season against the Wolfpack. The Eagles upset NC State 21-20 thanks in large part due to his seven-reception, 130-yard performance. Flowers also notched two touchdowns.

It’s easy to fall in love with the explosiveness of Flowers and he has the career production to back it up. He has over 3,000 yards from scrimmage and 29 total touchdowns. Flowers feels like a player who could boom in the NFL with a very low potential to bust. He’s undersized at 5’10” and a tick over 170 pounds, but someone will get a player who contributes at a high level regardless of the adversity presented to his offense.