Week 5 had upsets and big offensive performances all over college football. From Kentucky coming into the national spotlight to some big running back performances, we get a better sense of whose stock is up, whose is down, and what under the radar names are important to know.
Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State
Walker headlines another fantastic week by slashing the Western Kentucky defense for 126 yards rushing and 3 TDs. Every week he seems to get better and more comfortable in the Spartan offense with excellent vision, and high-end contact balance as defenders just bounce off of him. I’ve made the move of Walker up to my RB3 since he appears to have the burst and athleticism necessary for the NFL and should be this year’s Javonte Williams.
Tyler Allgeier, RB, BYU
With backup QB Baylor Romney starting, the Cougars relied on Allgeier this week against Utah State. He couldn’t be stopped rushing for 218 yards and 3 TDs. His size and explosion off the snap caused fits for the Aggies in this game. Allgeier’s vision also seems to be improving as he saw cutback lanes a few times throughout the game for big runs. He also caught three passes showing some pass-catching upside. Allegeier is moving up draft boards in this 2022 class as his stock rises.
Darian Kinnard, OT, Kentucky
Kentucky’s upset win over Florida set the SEC on fire, and a big part of their success was good blocking up front. Kinnard was an absolute monster in pass protection, where his strength dominated some high-end pass rushers throughout the game. Florida rotated players throughout the game (see Dare Rosenthal’s struggles below), and Kinnard played well against them all. His explosion off the snap to get into good position was a huge benefit. With functional strength to move pass rushers away from the pocket, Kinnard is making a push for the first round.
Devonte Wyatt, DL, Georgia
Pick who you want on this Georgia defensive front who helped themselves again, but Wyatt may have had his best game to date. He was penetrating against a weak Arkansas interior, often being used to 2-gap. The football IQ was on display as he read the run game to make plays. Wyatt also displayed some excellent explosion off the snap to get into the backfield and make KJ Jefferson’s life difficult. He is a Top 50 type player who could keep rising into the first round.
Wan’Dale Robinson, WR, Kentucky
Robinson has had a unique path to Kentucky after being a 5-star RB recruit at Nebraska and transferring to the Wildcats. He is a swiss army knife who is getting more natural at receiver and is one of the best athletes on the field at all times. Robinson was utilized in different ways, from 9 routes deep to screen passes, getting him the ball in space. He is the type of receiver NFL teams love to add and use in specific situations hoping for a big play. If Robinson declares, look for him to be a Top 100 lock with good workouts.
Myron Cunningham, OT, Arkansas
Cunningham had a great chance to vault up draft boards with a great game against Georgia, but it ended up tumbling him down. Often matching up with Adam Anderson, Cunningham struggled mightily to match the athleticism of Anderson and other Georgia defenders. He got caught reaching numerous times and was not able to slide while keeping his hands in front of him. On a few key plays (including a potential TD), Cunningham was called for Holding and hurting the offense because he couldn’t handle the defense. If he can’t improve, the first round may be a pipedream.
Dare Rosenthal, OT, Kentucky
Despite Kentucky getting the upset win, Rosenthal wasn’t overly impressive. There were multiple plays where he picked up the wrong assignment leading to pressure (and one sack). Rosenthal clearly has some promising physical talents, but the mental side of playing the position and working within the O-Line still isn’t there. There is plenty of upside if he can settle in, but he didn’t showcase that in this game.
Jake Haener, QB, Fresno State
Haener has been a bit of a draft darling in some communities, but he wasn’t great against Hawaii. His lack of physical tools hurt him when he tried to fit the ball into tight windows, and it just couldn’t get there fast enough. This led to tipped balls, and ultimately, interceptions. Haener has the football IQ to be an NFL player, but starting upside seems a long way away. Haener’s stock is trending down.
Names To Know
Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia
Dean is a pretty known prospect being at Georgia, but his name isn’t getting enough recognition. He flew all over the field against Arkansas making plays against the run off-tackle and stunt blitzing against the pass. Throughout the game, when a big play was made that impressed me, it always ended up being Dean. He is an ideal weakside LB who can be used in various ways and is making his way up into Day 2.
Justin Rice, LB, Utah State
Rice was the one shining spot of Utah State against BYU. While other defenders were shying away from contact and getting run over, Rice consistently made good form tackles against the run. BYU ended up adjusting and ensuring Rice was blocked every play because he was the best player by far. A late rounder with special teams and reserve upside, he is a name to know.
Deangelo Malone, EDGE, Western Kentucky
Malone has had college production for years now and is a legitimate NFL prospect. Getting to watch him against Michigan State this week was a real test of his pass-rush ability and how he sets the edge. Though he had some bad plays, the upside is worth writing about. He followed up his 1.5 sack game against Indiana last week with a 2 TFL against Michigan State, setting the edge and making good plays. Malone’s ability to rip through the line and his awareness of when passes are coming or where runners will go is exceptional and worth noting as his stock rises.
Bailey Zappe, QB, Western Kentucky
Zappe and WR Jerreth Sterns are two starters for Western Kentucky who transferred from Houston Baptist. The new offensive coordinator for WKU, Zach Kittley, came from Houston Baptist and implemented his offense to keep things running smoothly. It is a ton of passing all over the field that is fun to watch. Though Zappe isn’t an exceptional athlete nor a great arm, he is accurate and works within the offense to put up points against any defense. Against Michigan State, Western Kentucky put up 31 points behind Zape’s arm. Throwing the ball 64 times, Zappe didn’t have an interception and threw 3 TDs against a tough Big Ten defense. He could sneak into draft late as a solid reserve QB, especially if he gets an All-Star Game invite.