The Hula Bowl is one of the oldest and most traditional collegiate all-star games. Normally taking place in Hawaii (hence Hula), due to logistical issues on the big island, the game is taking place in Orlando this year at the Bounce House on the campus of UCF.
The 2022 Hula Bowl roster is set and has some talented players up and down its roster. Most of the players in this game are likely day three prospects but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t tune in.
Today, we are going to look at each position and talk about some of the prospects to watch out for in the 2022 Hula Bowl.
2022 HULA BOWL LOOK AHEAD
The best passing prospect in this game is SE Louisiana’s, Cole Kelley. The big-armed transfer from Arkansas is a huge man at 6’7” 260-pounds. Kelley isn’t the most fundamentally sound thrower but he has the tools to develop. The other intriguing story at the position at the Hula Bowl is Florida State signal-caller McKenzie Milton. Milton was a standout at UCF before suffering a near career-ending injury. Milton is undersized and has not been the same passer he was before the injury. He is still a great story to follow.
One veteran RB headlines the Hula Bowl roster. Stephen Carr from Indiana has seemingly been in CFB forever. The transfer from Southern Cal is excellent at catching the football. He has done a better job at Indiana over the last two seasons of running the ball better between tackles. I want to get a look at Sacred Heart back Julius Chestnut. Chestnut has good size; I just need to see the skillset in action.
The Hula Bowl wide receiver class lacks the flash, to say the least. Perhaps the most captivating pass-catcher playing in Orlando this week is Appalachian State’s, Jalen Virgil. While he isn’t the most accomplished receiver, Virgil is one of the best return men in this class.
The best overall position group at the 2022 Hula Bowl may just be the TE group. There are at least two draftable players and a few others with some upside. While he may not be the best of the bunch, my favorite tight end here is Thomas Odukoya of Eastern Michigan. You will struggle to find a better blocking TE in this class. Unfortunately, the EMU coaching staff never featured him in the passing game. Peyton Hendershot (Indiana) was a hotter name last season. I still believe he can be a contributor in the NFL. I want to see the two FCS players in action (Jamal Pettigrew/McNeese State and Andrew Ogletree/Youngstown State).
The offensive tackle group is not very strong. A couple of players I would grade out as priority free agents are all I see. My highest-ranked two offensive tackles at the Hula Bowl are Michigan State’s AJ Arcuri and Ben Petrula of Boston College. Tristen Taylor of Eastern Washington has a frame worth looking into to see if the talent is there to back it up.
INTERIOR OFFENSIVE LINE
The Hula Bowl interior offensive line class is much better at the top than the offensive tackles. Stewart Reese of Florida is a huge man with position versatility. He currently ranks as my #10 guard. My #8 center right now is currently LSU’s Liam Shanahan. Both players have a chance to be drafted late on day three. Cain Madden (Notre Dame) and Alex Mollette (Marshall) could also hear their names called.
The edge rushers and interior defensive linemen combine here to give the Hula Bowl another handful of draftable prospects. Keir Thomas of Florida State (transfer from South Carolina) can get after passer as a sub-package rusher. Scott Patchan (Colorado State) and Arron Mosby (Fresno State) were two of the best edge rushers in the MWC. Both can make their way onto NFL rosters next year. You may not an interior defender with more hustle than Demetrius Taylor of Appalachian State. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Tomon Fox of North Carolina who has more career sacks in Chapel Hill than both Lawrence Taylor and Julius Peppers.
I will be surprised if any of the linebackers in the Hula Bowl game are drafted. Blaze Alldredge of Missouri is probably the best of the group.
This is a one-player group for me. South Carolina safety Jaylan Foster went from walk-on to All American. Foster was one of the most productive defensive backs in the SEC this year. He is going to be a reserve safety and core special teams player in the NFL for years. Foster is currently my #9 safety and I project him in the late 4th-5th round area.
Nick Sciba (K/Wake Forest) should find his way into an NFL camp. The other five specialists in his game I did not track this season.
You can see the full Hula Bowl roster HERE!
The 2022 Hula Bowl takes place on Saturday, January 15th. The kick-off is set for 11 am (CST) and will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network.