The 2021 college football regular season is coming to an end. Soon we will be prepping for bowl game announcements and setting the College Football Playoff. This week is the final full slate of games for prospects to make their impact before the December bowl games.
There are plenty of worthy prospects that deserve our attention on Saturday. Our TDN100 prospects are available right now. Strong performances to end this season could catapult prospects up the ranks. I narrowed down a list of five prospects to watch this Saturday.
Roger McCreary vs. Alabama
Roger McCreary is one of the best cover corners in the nation. Playing cornerback in the SEC assures you will be battle-tested. McCreary is set to face his toughest challenge to date against the explosive receiver tandem from Tuscaloosa: rising prospect Jameson Williams and John Metchie III, with Bryce Young slinging the rock.
McCreary has been a lockdown defender this season. He has surrendered 26 receptions for 353 yards and snagged two interceptions on 54 targets. Also, he accounted for one pick-six early in the season. His combination of speed, athleticism, and improved techniques makes him one of the top corners in this draft. If he can successfully limit Alabama’s pair of explosive playmakers, his stock is sure to receive a boost.
Malik Cunningham vs. Kentucky
Malik Cunningham is coming off his best performance of the season against Duke, accounting for more than 500 yards of total offense and seven touchdowns with zero interceptions. The dynamic dual-threat quarterback will have his hands full against Kentucky’s defense.
Cunningham has thrown for more than 2,500 yards while adding 933 on the ground. The Cardinals’ offense will need every bit of his explosive playmaking ability to pull off a win. Cunningham’s legs are used to create advantageous passing situations.
In an underwhelming quarterback class, Cunningham could find himself at the Senior Bowl or Shrine Bowl in front of NFL scouts and executives. If he makes the right impression, someone is sure to take a chance on the developmental signal-caller late in April’s draft.
Amare Barno vs. Virginia
Virginia Tech’s best pass rusher, Amare Barno, is a great athlete with a long and lean frame. You can never have enough pass rushers in the NFL. Barno will be facing a high-octane passing attack led by quarterback Brennan Armstrong. Armstrong has thrown for more than 4,000 yards in only 10 games. In addition, he averages 44.5 passing attempts per game.
This opens plenty of opportunities for Barno to pin his ears back and attack left tackle Bobby Haskins. The Hokies edge defender can create consistent pressure on Anderson to disrupt his gun-slinging habits. He is a defensive player worth watching this weekend.
Jaylen Warren vs. Oklahoma
One of the best surprises of the season has been the emergence of Jaylen Warren for the Cowboys’ offense. The 5-foot-8, 215-pound running back runs hard with good pad level. His squatty bowling ball frame makes it difficult to win the leverage game.
Facing their rivals, the Oklahoma Sooners present a solid challenge for Warren. They have a talented front seven, especially against the run, allowing 122 rushing yards per game. Oklahoma’s defense has speed on the second level to box Warren in. Displaying patience in their zone scheme and manipulating Sooners defenders will be the key to the level of Warren’s success.
Zay Flowers vs. Wake Forest
Boston College’s Zay Flowers is arguably the most dynamic receiver with the ball in his hands. Flowers’ game is built and mirrors the mold of Rondale Moore, a second-round pick of this past draft. Flowers is coming off a three-catch, 92-yard, and one-touchdown performance last week.
Sam Hartman leads a high-scoring Wake Forest offense, and Boston College will need Flowers to make explosive plays to keep up with the Demon Deacons. Wake Forest should look to bracket him in coverage and limit his touchdowns downfield. If not, he can leave this game with a tremendous impact. Flowers can declare and join the other explosive weapons in this class if he so chooses.