PAC-12 Week 2 Stock Up/Stock Down
Another week of college football is in the books, and the PAC-12 had some great games including an overtime comeback by Colorado over Nebraska, and Cal getting the upset over Washington despite being 14 point underdogs with the walk-off field goal. USC looked like a completely new team from last season, rolling over #23 ranked Stanford. Below are a few NFL draft eligible players who saw their draft stock go up, and a few who saw their stock drop after week 2. (Numbers listed are height, weight, 40 time, and class)
(6-4, 232, 4.86, RSr.), University of Colorado: Although his stat line doesn’t jump out (28/41, 375, 2-1), Montez showed accuracy, poise, and confidence leading his team back from a 17-0 comeback versus a hated rival. Montez’s deep ball looked impressive, tossing a 96-yard bomb with a pass rusher in his face on a flea-flicker, then having perfect ball placement on a 26-yard touchdown down the sideline to tie the game with 45 seconds left. While he wasn’t perfect, Montez showed up when it counted in a big game, and NFL teams will take notice.
(6-1, 184, 4.46, RJr.), University of California – Berkeley: Bynum has gotten lost in the shuffle so far of what is shaping up to be a very talented cornerback class, but had a strong game versus Washington. Bynum has the length and athleticism that NFL team’s love, and show cased impressive coverage and ball skills in the win on Saturday. He had one interception showcasing good recognition, running the route for the receiver and attacking the ball at the catch point.
(6-3, 265, -, Sr.), University of Utah: A 3 sack game, even if it is against Northern Illinois, will certainly help your stock. Anae is a technician who wins with a variety of pass rush moves and plays with considerable power. He lacks the athleticism and flexibility of top tier pass rushers, but with a strong season could work his way into day 2 consideration.
(6-3, 293, -, Jr.), University of Washington: After showing flashes as a rotational player last year, and earning honorable mention on the preseason All-Pac-12 team, many (including myself) expected Onwuzurike to breakout this year. So far it’s been a bit of a mixed bag, with the flashes still showing up, but needing to read and react faster. Although his stat line doesn’t jump out (3 assisted tackles), Onwuzurike played with good burst and power to create interior pressure and free up his teammates. Hopefully as the season progresses his play will become more consistent and he can make more impact plays.
Graham Harrell and the USC Offense
This isn’t a player, but I thought Harrell deserved some love after USC smoked Stanford 45-20. After being the second choice for the offensive coordinator position behind Kliff Kingsbury, Harrell came to save what seemed like an already doomed situation at USC under Clay Helton. But with freshman quarterback Kedon Slovis and a cast of talented wide receivers, Harrell instead has the air raid system taking off in Los Angeles. With the trend of coaching hires in college and the NFL shifting to young, offensive gurus Harrell is someone to keep an eye on.
University of Washington Passing Offense
This was a weird game with almost a three hour weather delay, but Cal was a two touchdown underdog and Washington was riding a 14 game home winning streak. In his second game back, Jacob Eason struggled to find a rhythm, and looked uncomfortable, missing some open throws and having 2 fumbles and an interception. He wasn’t helped by 7 drops from his receivers, including several inexcusable ones from Aaron Fuller and Andre Baccellia that would’ve gone for first downs. Washington was forced to settle for field goals instead of touchdowns in the red zone, which wasn’t enough at the end of the day. Running back Salvon Ahmed was the one bright spot as they fed him the rock for 119 yards and a touchdown.
Laviska Shenault Jr.
(6-2, 224, -, Jr.), University of Colorado: I am still a big fan of Shenault and his game, but in what is shaping to be a stacked wide receiver class, Shenault has failed to standout through two games. While you’d think if his quarterback’s stock is going up, it’d be with the help of Shenault, so far he only has 8 catches for 79 yards and a touchdown. Shenault mainly feasted on quick hitting routes, and hasn’t seemed to expand much on his route tree, used only on quick outs and drag routes versus Nebraska. In addition, his injury concerns resurfaced as it looked like he re-aggravated his shoulder injury from last season. Shenault needs to prove he can stay healthy and get back to last year’s form if he wants a chance of being the first receiver drafted in April.
(5-11, 213, -, Sr.), UCLA: After scoring a 5 yard touchdown on his second carry of the game, Kelley was held in check, ending with 15 carries for 53 yards and 5.3 YPC, and 2 receptions for 2 yards. Kelley is in a tough situation, with UCLA struggling to compete with Cincinnati and San Diego State in their first two games, starting out 0-2. He’s going to need to put Chip Kelly’s offense on his back if he wants to hear his name called early on draft weekend.