With college football almost here, that also means it is time for NFL college scouts to get ready to hit the road again for their fall trips. While I'm more of a fan of pro personnel, I'm going to dip into the college ranks and give you the top NFL prospect at each BCS school.
I'm also going to give you a few prospects from other notable non-BCS schools as well. This is should be fun, as I'm really just going to quickly give you the reasons why the player is an NFL prospect.
Here we go.
Uzzi is a 6'3", 300-pound OG prospect that made the second team ACC squad last year. He can flip from the RG and LG spots and has solid quickness.
Naturally, as he plays for an option team, he is solid to pull and trap and flashes some second level ability. He will be looking to make the first team All-ACC in 2011.
Wilber is a 6'5", 240-pound pass-rushing specialist. I see him in the NFL as a DPR type, due to his solid snap quickness, length and athleticism bending on the edge.
He's not the strongest at the point of attack and has problems with mass and power. Yet, if you're looking for a middle- to late-round DPR type, he's your guy.
Kuechly, around 6'3", 240 pounds, is an uber-productive LB that plays with great toughness, instincts and technique. He's not the greatest athlete out there but he can hold his own in zone coverage.
He plays the run by attacking the LOS downhill and just gets after it in run alleys. He should be among the nation's leaders in tackles this season.
Depending on who you ask, Branch may or may not be in Da'Quan Bowers' or Gaines Adams' class, but he's still a great prospect. 6'5", 260 pounds, he has the size to man both sides of a 40 front edge.
He plays the "Bandit" end spot for the Tigers and has solid play strength and athletic ability. A big season could push him high on draft boards.
Bradham is a 6'2", 240-pound specimen of a human being. He looks like a Greek God shirtless, but also has Godly-like football talent. He looks like a first-round pick on tape.
Bradham is a star, and is very instinctive. He also has the speed and range to make plays all over the field and has excellent ball location skills. I expect a huge year from him in 2011.
Tate is a huge safety prospect at 6'4", and in the 220-pound range. He's going to be a serious contender again for the Nagurski, Bednarik and Lott awards; again.
He can also factor in the box and play OLB, as he reads and reacts to the run very, very quickly. Tate is also athletic enough to redirect well in space as a zone coverage defender on the back end.
Bryan is a mega-sized and thickly built TE that stands at 6'5", 265 pounds. I would love to have him on my team, especially if I'm a run dominant offense, as he is almost as big as having an extra OL on the edges.
He also can get up field pretty well at times and has been named a preseason All-American by Lindy's for 2011. He has the talent to factor as a receiver and a blocker.
Renfree is a pupil of David Cucliffe, and that alone makes you take notice. He's not at a top flight, football-producing school, but he flashes some solid skills for a QB.
6'5", 220 pounds, he doesn't have a shotgun for an arm, per se, but he has enough to get it to all levels. I love Renfree's size, as he can dictate his own throwing lanes.
He just needs to cut down the picks.
At the last minue, I switched from Marcus Fortson to Armstrong. I love big safeties that flash play making potential, and Armstrong does at 6'4", 215 pounds.
While I'm waiting for him to take the next step in his development as a complete back end defender, his athleticism and size will warrant a high-round pick next April.
Coples didn't have too much interest in football growing up, but now he is on the verge of becoming a first round pick. He's a terror on the edges at 6'6", 285 pounds, and is an excellent athlete.
He must improve his point of attack strength to anchor vs. the run, but the combo of his size, play speed, length, snap quickness and athleticism has made him a star. He could be one of the very elite prospects next April.
Minnifield will get plenty of NFL looks due to the fact he's a 6'0" CB that makes plays on the ball. He flashes excellent hands, evidenced by his six picks last year.
He can hold his own on the perimeter and doesn't back down from any WR. He can get physical at the line of scrimmage, transition out of his backpedal in off coverage, carry WRs downfield and has natural interceptor traits.
Hosley is a 5'10", 170-pound quick CB from the Sunshine State. He made 13 starts, nine picks and eight PBUs, marking for many All-American teams.
He has some return man value, but his best spot is CB. I like his transition quickness, mirror ability, lateral movement skills and play speed. He should be a solid pro CB.
6'5", 335 pounds, Osemele has first round potential. He can play LT or he can kick inside to OG, as it remains to be seen what spot NFL scouts will feel he's best at.
But he's a solid athlete, can mirror well on the edges and has solid play strength. Swing OLs are big time finds in the NFL because they let coaches be creative with their fronts, and Osemele fits the bill.
Beshears is a smallish WR at only 5'8", 174 pounds. He's a good athlete with solid quickness and play speed. He may have trouble getting off the LOS vs. bigger, physical CBs.
Yet, he does flash some agility and speed on the field. I'm just not sure if he will be big enough to consistently factor as a WR on the NFL level.
His best bet to make it as a RS.
Hartman is a 6'3", 206-pound safety prospect for K-State. He has great size for a safety prospect, yet there many question marks to his game.
He may be a better strong safety than free safety, and his overall production, athleticism and play speed are questionable. I need to watch Hartman a bit more.
Egnew caught 90 balls for over 700 yards and five TDs last year. He's a 6'6", 245-pounder that likely should win the Mackey award this year.
He has first-round value and is just a terror on safeties and linebackers. He's a natural receiver, has a large strike zone, soft hands and solid speed to scoot around for a big man.
He should have a huge year and become a first-round pick next April.
Griffin is a dual-threat QB that can beat you both ways. He's a fantastic athlete that may have some value as a potential WR in the NFL.
6'3", 220 pounds, he can buy time in the pocket, but also can play in an offense predicated on sprints, bootlegs and roll outs. He throws well on the run and ca get up field with his legs.
I remember when a buddy of mine told me about a QB in New Mexico, that was a high schooler. I saw him on tape and thought "this guy's good, but he's fat and he's from a state not known for football".
Today, Landry Jones is a 6'4", 229-pound QB of the Oklahoma Sooners. He has first round talent as QB, as he has a strong arm, solid release quickness, good athletic ability and sound accuracy.
He has a chance to compete for the Heisman this year.
Where the heck did this dude come from? Who cares, because he's a flat out baller. Blackmon lit up college football last year and comes back this year as one of the best players in the country.
6'1", 210 pounds, Blackmon has good size, strength to beat press of the LOS, good speed, separation quickness and excellent hands.
Saying he's productive is an understatement after last year.
Randall is a solid middle interior presence for the Longhorns at 6'4", 300 pounds. He can get off the ball at the snap, jump on top of OLs, fight to pressure and push the middle.
Randall has solid point of attack strength, and flashes some anchor ability. I'm looking for a huge year out of him in Austin.
Davis is a 6'2", 195-pound safety prospect for the Red Raiders. He plays for Texas Tech so you know he gets his fair share of reps vs. the pass in practice.
He can play both safety spots, as he seems willing to play the run and attack the LOS. He average nearly seven tackles a game last year and is line for another solid season in Lubbock.
Cyrus Gray could have easily been placed here, but I'm going with Fuller. He had a great start for the Aggies last year then tailed off. Once he finds out how to be a consistent threat week in and week out, watch out.
6'4", 215 pounds, Fuller has excellent size and length. He has a solid catch radius, is strong to release off the line and can shield defenders from the ball.
I'm anxious to see what he does this year.
5'10", 200 pounds, Pead is a solid RB prospect. He flashes every down ability as he has solid quickness to jump to the edges, but seems to be willing to bang with the big boys in between the tackles.
With the Bearcats seemingly bent on redeeming themselves after a down 2010 season, I expect to see a determined, focused and strong runner out of Pead, which will only help his NFL prospects.
Wilson has not played football for too long, but the former futbol player has a future on the gridiron. He's a great athlete at 6'0", 190 pounds and plays CB.
He returned two picks for scores last year and rumor has it Oklahoma avoided him for the most part in the Fiesta Bowl. If he can continue to make the jumps he's shown in the past year to to year, then he could be a high round pick.
Benavides is a 6'4", 300-pound pivot player that can man the middle. He flashes a no-look gun snap, quick feet, knee bend and snap quickness.
Playing center, he naturally has DL front recognition skills and understands pass protection adjustments. He gives effort to work when uncovered and has solid toughness.
Lindsey had a great year in 2010, as it marked the official transition of him becoming a DE from a LB. He's a 6'2", 250-pound edge defender with outstanding athletic ability.
Although he plays DE for the Panthers, I think Lindsey;s best bet for the NFL is to move to 3-4 OLB. He reminds me a bit of Larry English, but I think Lindsey is a more fluid athlete than the Chargers pass rusher.
Sanu is probably the best Scarlet Knight WR since Kenny Britt. 6'2", 218 pounds, he is an excellent offensive weapon and dynamic WR.
He was injured throughout 2010, but managed to snatch 44 balls. I think with a big year this year, he can move up boards as he has a high ceiling.
I have Daniels as the Bulls' top prospect, but I need to see more out of him. He has a ton of talent, with a strong arm and good athletic ability, but I need Daniels to refine his craft more.
I have some questions about his awareness and ability to manage the game. I'm not sure if he is always focused on the clock. But he does show a pretty blank canvas, great competitiveness and solid athletic ability.
Bailey is an underclassmen, I know. And he is undersized, I know. But we have seen similar sized backs to him make it to the NFL, and become productive players.
He's an every down player for the Orange, has a thick trunk and has been plenty productive in upstate New York. Interested to see what he has added to his game this 2011 season.
Irvin is a sack master, and does it with a quick first step, speed, fight to pressure, quick hands, tenacity and athleticism. He stands 6'3", 240 pounds and had 14 sacks last year.
I'm not sold on him being a true 4-3 DE in the NFL, but as a DPR in a 40 front or a 3-4 OLB, this guy has a bright future. He can menace an offensive front down after down, and could be a high round pick to 3-4 teams.
6'0", 235 pounds, you have to love Ford's size as a bell cow runner. He could even move up the I and become a FB in the NFL. But a big back team that has a power running game could tale a flyer on Ford and watch him grow into a great one.
He rushed for 480 yards and seven TDs last year and I expect those numbers to improve. I would like to see his long speed and wiggle ability a bit more on tape, but as a downhill runner, he's a solid prospect.
Hagerup is a 6'5", 207-pound punter with a solid leg, good hang time and flashes good directional ability. Punters are usually late round or undrafted players, but Hagerup has a chance to get into the fifth, sixth or seventh rounds.
Adams is a 6'8", 300-pound OT that currently mans the left edge for the Buckeyes. He is a solid athlete, flashes a set mixture and has good mirror ability.
I would like to see him work against more speedy rushers to get a better sense of his adjust and re-direct ability, but he's a solid player and the biggest loss of the suspended Buckeyes. He could be a first- or second-round pick.
Moye played running back in high school, but is a WR for the Nittany Lions. He has solid play speed and quickness to scoot around the field on a 6'5", 200-pound frame.
He has grown in knowledge on how to use his length and size and has increased his strike zone every year. He size and speed should warrant considerable NFL looks and he could be a steal for the redzone.
A 6'3", 305-pound force in the middle, whenever Short comes out I think he has a chance to be a first round pick. He will see more double teams this year, and I think he is up for the challenge.
He flashes good snap quickness, point of attack strength, anchor ability and quick scheme read ability. He also can fight to pressure as a pass rusher and hold down two gaps.
What else than an OL be the Badgers' top prospect? Nick Toon is a good receiver, but I like Konz. He can play OC or OG and stands 6'5", 315 pounds.
Big, strong, solid athletically, a worker and tough, Konz may not become a first round pick, but he could develop into a solid starter in the NFL. He should be an All-Big Ten performer this year.
Kirk Ferentz is a renowned OL coach, so its only fitting Iowa continues to produce solid OL prospect through the years. A 6'6", 300 pounder, Reiff is known for his hustle, gritt and competitiveness.
He has solid size, yet he works on technique and will and rarely gives up. He flashes some athleticism for a big man, and he can play multiple spots.
It's a bit weird to have a defensive player from Michigan as their top prospect, becuase the Big Blue defense wasn't good the past few years. But the 6'2", 300-pound DT has still been a solid player.
He looks best suited as 40 front DT, likely as a three-technique, but don't be shocked to see a 30 front team try to make him an end.
Worthy is another stud DT in the Big Ten. He has 17 career TFLs and 8.5 sacks. 6'3", 305 pounds, Worthy has been closely watched by NFL scouts over the past few years.
Some say he has first round value others have a more wait and see approach. This is a pivotal season for Worthy, as I think he has a large amount of talent.
McKnight has 68 career grabs for 1100 yards and 11 scores. He's a 6'3", 215-pound WR that has great play making ability.
He has a chance to become a better pro receiver in the NFL than he is as a Golden Gopher. But I think playing in Jerry Kill's spread offense, his stats will increase as a senior.
I almost went with Jared Crick, but Alfonzo Dennard is the rumored reason Prince Amukamara slipped in the draft. Word has it that scouts noticed Dennard making the same amount if not more plays than Amukamara.
Dennard is a physical yet super athletic corner that should be in the first frame next April. He can come down and support the run but also man up on any WR in the country.
Browne is a 6'5", 265-pound DE prospect with 16 career sacks. He's a legit NFL prospect that I think can get up to Day 3 of the draft, if not earlier.
He came into the Wildcat program as a LB, but has since developed into a great end. He can rush the passer and play the run effectively.
A 6'2", 215-pound safety prospect from the Pac-12, with great playmaking skills and an ability to factor deep and in the box is one Sean Cattouse. He will battle T.J. McDonald for top safety honors in the conference.
Cattouse has 109 tackles, five picks and 15 PBU's. He should be All-Pac-12 this year and a solid NFL player over time.
Harris may be the best CB in the Pac-12 and it seems like he has been in Eugene for 10 years. He's a sticky cover corner with excellent transition quickness, mirror ability and play speed.
Harris is capable of making a play for balls in flight like a receiver and plays with a good amount of confidence. I would like to see him bulk up and get stronger for his press ability but that's nitpicking.
6'2" and 205 pounds, Mitchell is a very good athlete for the deep middle position. He can factor as a roaming free safety, or use his size to play like an extra LB.
OSU views him as one of their most athletic safeties in history and their best defensive play maker. He will be asked to do a lot for the Beavers defense this year.
Who else would be here? Jonathan Martin? Maybe. Shane Skov? Maybe. Delano Howell? Maybe. Chris Owanusu? Maybe.
But Luck may be the most complete QB prospect to ever come out. He's more athletic than Peyton Manning and is a better pure pocket passer than Michael Vick. 6'4", 235 pounds, Luck is the front runner for the Heisman already.
I remember evaluating Polk as a high schooler from the Inland Empire area in California. I thought he was too skinny to be an every down RB, but his play making ability warranted a move to WR over CB.
I was wrong. Polk de-committed from USC and signed with Washington and is now one of the best and most complete RBs in the conference and the country. He is a sure-fire NFL prospect and should be a high round pick.
Wilson is a 6'3", 175-pound WR that caught 55 balls for over 1000 yards and six TDs last year as a freshman. He's an underclassmen, but I think he is a better prospect over Jeff Tuel.
He's not the fastest WR around, but I think in the NFL, he can be a solid No. 2 receiver as a chains guy. He's QB friendly, catches the football well and is a long target.
Foles is a 6'5", 230-pounder with a solid skill set. He grades out well in most positional categories for a QB and really works through his progressions well.
I think Foles does a great job of manipulating coverages and safeties with his eyes, as free safeties have said it's a chess match down after down playing against Foles. He could get into the first frame in Next April.
Burfict is one the top overall players in the country and will be a first-round pick when he comes out. He was a stud as a prep in Southern California and is a stud in the Desert for ASU.
He does have some discipline problems and can get too emotionally wound up, but he's big, athletic, instinctive, fast and productive. He could win the Butkus this year.
Moving into the Pac-12, Miller will get to do battle with some top pass rushing DLs. 6'8", 310 pounds, he's a solid OG prospect that uses his length to his advantage. He likes to stay clean as a pass rusher, keeping defenders away from his body.
Versus the run, Miller will try to maul as he will also try to position and wall DLs off. He should be an All-Pac-12 performer in 2011.
Dye, a 6'0", 216-pound safety, is the leader of the Bruin defense. He is going to be a free safety this year for the Bruins, as the past few years he has been a strong safety for the back end.
He has good range, is productive vs. the run, plays with sound athletic ability and flashes some coverage instincts. He could get himself into the middle rounds with a good year.
This likely will be Barkley's last year USC, as the 6'2", 220-pound QB will probably move on to the NFL as a first round pick. He has a great arm, solid accuracy, works through his progressions and has become more of a vocal leader.
Barkely has been viewed as a phenom since he was a freshman in high school, and has even been called an outlier by Pete Carroll. The NFL is watching and a big year could make him a top-10 pick.
Wynn isn't the biggest, fastest or strongest armed and makes some costly mistakes at times. But he flashes some ability and maybe working with Norm Chow will make him a late bloomer?
Will made a lot of all-everything lists last year and while Kellen Moore gets a lot of the ink, Winn is perhaps the Moore of the Bronco defense.
6'4", and almost 300 pounds, he can play DT or strongside DE. I think NFL teams will be inclined to watch him as he could play some 3-4 DE. He reminds me a bit of Jared Ordrick.
6'4", 320 pounds, Reynolds is a talented OT prospect that can play both LT and RT. I think he could stay at LT this year, as protecting one Jake Heaps is task No.1 for the Cougar front.
Reynolds has All-American talent, solid feet, strength, knee bend and mirror ability. He may have to kick over to RT in the NFL though.
Carder seems like a Gary Patterson type of football player; smart, tough, gritty and a hustler. He's a 6'3", 237-pound LB that fits into the TCU defense very well.
I'm not sure exactly which LB spot he'll be best suited for in the NFL, but his production, size, hustle and instincts should make him a solid player for some team.
Te'o was an elite recruit a few years back and has not disappointed in South Bend. 6'2", 230 pounds, he's a great athlete, a big time hitter, instinctive, laterally explosive and tough.
He can play the 3-4 ILB or any of the 4-3 LB spots. Te'o is a future first-round draft pick and I think this could be his final year at Notre Dame. He's a Butkus candidate.
Jenkins may be a bit young for an NFL prospect, but he's good enough to warrant some looks as an underclassmen prospect. A 6'1", 225-pound LB, he will only continue to get bigger as he matures physically.
He's shown already to be a productive LB that combines great instincts with sound athletic ability. He made 51 stops in SEC play alone and I think this year he could be among the nation's leaders in tackles.
Murray is a bit short, as he is only in the 6'0", 6'1" range, but he has a rocket arm and good athleticism. I like his release quickness, and he has Mark Richt downright giddy in Athens these days.
It remains to be seen whether the NFL will look past his limited height, but if so, then Murray could be a first round pick due to his skill set, upside and talent level.
The first LB in UK history to be a first team All-American, Trevathan is the Wildcats' best player and best prospect. He's a 6'1", 230-pound LB that is very productive and has rare play speed for a second level defender.
Trevathan beats OLs with his speed and angles to the football, has excellent ball locate vision and is very instinctive. He can play all three spots in a 4-3, but I think his best spot is the WILL position.
Jeffrey won't be in Columbia next year, at least in my opinion. Because he'll be in the NFL. He's too big, too athletic and too productive not be a very high selection next April.
He stands around 6'4", 230 pounds and has been a steady player since he came to the Gamecock proram as an elite level recruit. He and Marcus Lattimore are their best offensive players in years.
Jackson is back on the Vol squad after getting past some off the field problems this spring. He's an excellent DB that can play safety and corner at 6'0", 190 pounds.
His best position likely is free safety and he does it good athleticism, instincts, range and hitting ability. I'm very happy to know that Jackson will be returning to the field in Knoxville.
A Nagurski watchlist player, Marve is a solid ILB for the Commodores. He's 6'0", 235 pounds and is probably the best Vandy LB since Johnathan Goff. Marve is physical, tough and reads and reacts to the run very, very quickly.
He'll be looking to top 100 tackles for the third time in his career in 2011. I think Marve could be a middle to late round steal.
5'11" and 220 pounds, Richardson comes into this 2011 season as Batman. He's been Robin to Mark Ingram for the past two years, but the backfield in Tuscalossa belongs to Richardson now.
And we all know he's up to the task.
Richardson has excellent size and speed. I think he can be a little stiff/straightlinish at times, and he does see things a bit late at other times, but with more reps and carries, he should top 1000 yards this year and has first round pick talent.
Dont'A Hightower, Dre Kirkpatrick, Jesse Williams, Mark Barron, Nico Johnson and Courtney Upshaw all could have made this list.
Davis reportedly has added more muscle and girth to his 6'0", 220-pound frame. He's rumored to be in the 230-pound range or so according to various reports.
He was one of the leaders in total yards from scrimmage in the SEC, and figures to want another crack at the rushing title.
Davis could hear his name called in the first frame when he comes out.
Yes, I know, Dyer is not eligible for the 2012 Draft, but I think he is still Auburn's best prospect. Besides, we all know for the most part that the Tigers will be pretty young this year so it's not a shock their player on this list is an underclassmen.
But the stout and compact Dyer is a thickly built RB, with solid foot quickness, run strength and good speed. He should be primed to shoulder much of the Auburn offensive load this year.
Claiborne is a 6'0", 177-pound CB that made the All-SEC team last year. He was steady, which is good sense many teams did not want to test Patrick Peterson.
He's quick in his backpedal, knows he is tall and lanky but uses his length to bat away passes and I like the way he comes out of transition. He will move into the No.1 CB role in Baton Rouge.
Bolden is a 5'11", 220-pounder with good thickness, run strength and can wear down a defense. I would like to see his long speed a bit more, but he seems to have good wiggle and quickness.
I love his production and I fully expect a 1,000-yard season from him in 2011. He's Ole Miss' best player and best prospect in my opinion as I seem him as a bell cow back prospect.
Mitchell is a 5'11", 205-pound SS type that had 93 tackles last year. MSU views him as the leader of the secondary and he gets after it vs. the run and pass. He has four career picks in 37 games.
He should be an All-SEC performer this year, and should get some looks in the middle rounds of the draft, but he could see himself shoot up boards with a great year for the Bulldogs.