Week Four: Game Picks and Prospects to Watch

Eric Galko@OptimumScoutingFeatured ColumnistSeptember 24, 2009

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL - SEPTEMBER 17:  Quarterback Jacory Harris #12 of the Miami Hurricanes celebrates after defeating the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Land Shark Stadium on September 17, 2009 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Miami defeated Georgia Tech 33-17.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

After three weeks of college football, we know that just about every week, the unthinkable upset will happen, from Oklahoma to Oklahoma State to USC. Well in reality, college season is still to be determined. In this, week four of college football, upsets and surprises should see be bountiful and there should be a lot of college football prospects to watch.

College Game Picks

Ole Miss Over South Carolina (-4)
Though it will likely be a close match-up on Thursday night, Ole Miss have too many weapons on offense, and South Carolina doesn’t have enough on their offense.

Arkansas Over Alabama (+18)
Arkansas have one of the best offenses in the country and regardless of how good the Tide defense is, they can’t slow them down enough to win by 18+.

Iowa Over Penn State (+9.5)
Although the game is in Happy Valley, Iowa have been rather impressive this year starting with a great offensive line and tough defense. Penn State’s first real test could be an upset.

California Over Oregon (-5.5)
Jahvid Best is already a Heisman contender after his 5 TD performance last week, and although Oregon are tough at home and just beat Utah, they don’t have the offense to keep up.

Miami Over Virginia Tech (-2.5)
I really hate to pick VA Tech to lose at home, but Miami are red hot so far and Jacory Harris looks like the real deal. The game will depend on the play of Tyrod Taylor.

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TCU Over Clemson (+2.5)
I know BYU was the first BCS title contender in some time before they lost to Florida State, but TCU has a win over Virginia, and with Clemson, Utah, and BYU on slate, they could challenge for a top 2 spot.

Houston Over Texas Tech (-1)
The Cougars are lead by one of the best quarterback’s that’s not getting enough attention in Case Keenum. The Houston offense is more balance than Texas Tech, and they’ll prove it at home.

Georgia Over Arizona State (-11.5)
After losing to a Big 12 school earlier this year in Oklahoma State, Georgia won’t let the SEC fall behind the Pac-10 as well in conference dominate.

Georgia Tech Over North Carolina (-3)
Georgia Tech needs to rebound big here after looking very mediocre against Miami. North Carolina has struggled in recent weeks, and Tech has Dwyer healthy.

Kentucky Over Florida (+21.5)
Possible upset shocker, Kentucky has a few above average players on defense to slow down Florida a little, and if the offense can put up 24+ points, they could give the Gators a game.


NFL Prospects to Watch this Weekend

EJ Wilson and Marvin Austin of UNC vs. Georgia Tech’s Running Game
Austin is likely the more well known of the two prospects, as he was a highly touted recruit out of high school and looks the part of a future NFL first rounder.

Wilson has come on strong to start the season, and his stock will definitely grow as long as UNC looks solid on defense. Dwyer, Allen, and Jones form a backfield that rivals USC’s, and should be a great battle on the line between these two units.

Kam Chancellor, Stephen Virgil of Virginai Tech vs. Jacory Harris and Miami Passing Attack
Chancellor and Virgil are a part of the always dynamite Hokie secondary, and Chancellor may be one of the better safeties they’ve had in some time.

Jacory Harris made another top safety prospect, junior Morgan Burnett, seem very average last week, so Chancellor needs to show he’s a cut above and Virgil needs to show he can hang with the deep receivers.

Brian Bulaga and Kyle Calloway of Iowa vs. Penn State’s Pass Rush
It doesn’t matter what your position is, going into Happy Valley definitely gets to you. Bulaga and Calloway form the best tackle duo in the Big Ten (possibly the country), and will have to go against a Penn State defense that always provides great pressure from their ends and linebackers.

If Bulaga hopes to make his rise to a 2010 Top 10 pick this year, a great performance here may be just what he needs.

CJ Spiller of Clemson vs. TCU’s defense
Of the senior running backs, there’s no question Spiller is the best of the bunch in my eyes. However, with speed backs like Joe McKnight and Jahvid Best likely to declare as well, Spiller has to show he’s just as if not more electrifying as they are.

And going against one of the nation’s top defenses the past 5-10 years would be a strong indicator that he can live up to that bill.

Arrelious Benn of Illinois vs. Anderson Russell and Kurt Coleman of Ohio State
A top flight player that is already fighting with Dez Bryant as the top junior receiver and possible top receiver eligible for the 2010 draft, Benn causes headaches for opposing secondaries.

His deep speed at the slot position will be matched up with the fantastic safety duo of Anderson Russell and Kurt Coleman of Ohio State. Both are very draftable prospects, and scouts will be watching this match-up very closely to see which side may be a bit over-rated.

George Selvie of South Florida vs. Christian Ponder of Florida State
Christian Ponder is starting to gain some respect in scouting circles because of his great mobility and understanding of the pocket. Selvie, on the other hand, is hoping to show scouts that not even the elusive Ponder and dodge a sack by Selvie.

Because he is so undersized, he needs his production to scream out success if he hopes to get a look by teams as a late first, second round selection.

Please check out www.NFLHouse.com and the Optimum Scouting Department for more articles and NFL draft information. Email me with any questions or comments at EricG@nflhouse.com.


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