What We Learned in College Football Week 11

Who’s Up?

Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama:  I don’t know if any of this year’ class fits the modern definition of an alpha-number one NFL WR. I do believe that there are several 1-A type guys, and Calvin Ridley might be the best of them. Ridley has been extremely productive only when he has needed to be in Tuscaloosa. Alabama rarely slings the ball across the yard in the same way that the rest of college football is transitioning to. Ridley is very sure handed and is one of the better route runners in college football. Ridley had a monster game Saturday at Mississippi State recording 171 yards on five catches. The Tide needed every single one of those yards to keep their undefeated season alive.

Bradley Chubb:  After, to my reporting at least, playing a very average game against Clemson the week before Chubb came to play Saturday. He was easily the best player on the field against Boston College. Bradley is a big physical guy that is a true three down player. Chubb had 8 tackles on the game including 2.5 sacks and 4 tackles for loss. He also became the new sack king at NC State surpassing Mario Williams.

Who’s Down?

Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia:  Nick, like his cousin Bradley, hit a career milestone Saturday. Chubb became the fourth all-time SEC leader in rushing yards. Who did he pass? Someone by the name of Bo Jackson. That was about the only good news on the day for Chubb and his Bulldog teammates. The offense couldn’t get going consistently and Georgia got down big fast. Chubb ended the day with 11 carries for 27 yards and a touchdown. Chubb is having a nice rebound year but really can’t afford to have any more bad games down the stretch to keep his stock in the top 50.

Auden Tate, WR, Florida State:  I know Tate is banged up so I am not going to give it to him too harshly for this week. The passing game was struggling for most of the game and the lack of success mostly falls on freshmen QB James Blackman’s shoulders. There were two plays that Tate could have, and considering his talent and size, should have made for Blackman on Saturday though. The first play that comes to mind was down the right sideline. It was more or less a jump ball. Tate is going to win just about every jump ball at 6’5. He was able to get both hands on it but wasn’t able to squeeze the ball to give the Seminoles a spark. The second play that comes to mind is one where Tate just simply has to make. Tate beat the coverage badly breaking towards the sidelines. Once again, Auden got both hands on the ball, but just couldn’t clutch it in. The play almost certainly goes for a touchdown if he snags it.

I See You

Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa:  Iowa’s offense totaled 66 yards of net offense on Saturday and scored exactly zero points. Jackson, totaled 95 yards on two pick sixes and was responsible for the team’s only two scores. You may never find a stat crazier than that. Jackson, before this game even, has been a playmaker for the Hawkeyes. Jackson has now recorded an impressive seven interceptions on the year. Jackson has great hands and a knack for the football. Josh has nice size and will begin to enter second and maybe even first round projections.

Who is The Winner of The Main Event?

Deon Cain vs Tarvarus McFadden  Saturday Film Session Week 11

Deon Cain has been one of the more frustrating prospects to watch this season. There is no question that Cain has the talent to compete with the other WR prospects that are on  top of the board this year. Deon is capable of getting open at winning at every level of the defense. He showed a lot of pop in certain situations last season in a reduced role by capitalizing on big plays for the national champions. The consistency with Cain has been very frustrating this year. His hands haven’t seemed as sure as I was expecting this season. This game was about as exact of a microcosm of Cain’s season as one could have. Cain ends the game with four catches for only 17 yards. To be fair these four catches included a couple of key first down grabs. Cain dropped what would have been a huge pass that probably would have put the game away right then and there. He ran a nice route to get past McFadden down the left sideline, used his hands well to swat McFadden off his stride, and then let the ball go right through his hands.

McFadden came into the season as my number one CB prospect. While he is still in that conversation, at this point, he certainly hasn’t solidified that spot like some other prospects at different positions have. He has good length, athleticism, and is capable of playing physical at the line. After recording eight interceptions last season for the Seminoles, McFadden still hasn’t forced a turnover yet this season. He also seems to play off in coverage more than he did last year, at least in the games that I have watched him. McFadden, like Cain, wasn’t very good or bad in this outing. Clemson struggled to throw the ball Saturday but it more or less seemed to be growing pains from Clemson QB Kelly Bryant rather than the coverage Florida State played. McFadden was strong when screens were thrown to his side. He displayed good technique tackling and excellent closing speed.

The two players lined up one on one several times during Saturday’s contest. The only major play that happened between the two, however, was the aforementioned fourth quarter throw where Cain beat McFadden pretty badly…only to drop the ball. I don’t really want to declare either player the winner but if I had to I guess I will go with McFadden. Cain is in a difficult spot. While I think another year of seasoning at Clemson could be good for him, he has younger talent breathing down his neck and could easily play less snaps next year if he came back. I expect both players to enter the draft this off-season.



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