College Preview: 10/2 Early Games

#21 Texas vs. #8 Oklahoma, Cotton Bowl, Dallas, TX, 2:30 p.m., ABC


(1st-Round) #28 OLB Travis Lewis, 6-2, 232 pounds, 4.53 seconds, Redshirt-Junior.

In two seasons on the field for the Sooners, Lewis has earned All-Big 12 Conference first-team honors both years. He was the conference defensive newcomer of the year and freshman of the year in ’08 when he started 14 games and finished with 144 total tackles, 3.5 sacks and four interceptions. His numbers were down in ’09 with 109 tackles, one sack and one INT. He’s started all 27 games that he’s played and was the Sooners leading tackler in both seasons. He’s leading the OU defense in tackles this season with 35 in four games and one interception.

(1st-Round) #7 RB DeMarco Murray (right), 6-1, 214 pounds, 4.48 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Throughout his career, Murray has been hampered by injuries, missing games every season with injuries that ranked from turf toe to a sprained ankle. That’s why his career numbers don’t necessarily match the talents that he’s shown over the years. NFL teams like his north-south running style and he’s tough between the tackles, while possessing the speed to run the edge. Over the last three seasons, he’s run for 2,506 yards on 477 carries with 35 TD runs. Murray can also catch the ball, and has 87 receptions for 1,356 yards and 10 TDs. He saved the Sooners bacon earlier this year against upset-minded Utah State, running for 218 yards on 35 carries with two TD runs. In four games he’s run for 436 yards with seven touchdowns and caught 16 passes for 111 yards and one TD. Murray has also returned four kickoffs for 110 yards, a 27.5-yard average.  

(1st-Round) #44 DE/OLB Jeremy Beal, 6-3 ¼, 260 pounds, 4.74 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Earned first-team All-Big 12 Conference honors and was also mentioned on some All-America lists (AP had him third-team in the nation.) Over the season, he had 70 total tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, three forced fumbles and three passes that he knocked down. OU coaches have moved him all over the defense, lining him up at defensive end, dropping him into coverage and even using him at middle linebacker at times last year. So far this season, he has 20 total tackles and four sacks. While none of his skills are elite, the combination creates an impressive prospect as a player who could play in either the 3-4 or 4-3. He has 20.5 career sacks.

(2nd-Round) #20 FS Quinton Carter, 6-0 ¾, 195 pounds, 4.57 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Carter is coming off his first season as a full-time starter where he was the Sooners second leading tackler with 88 total tackles and four interceptions, while earning second-team All-Big 12 status. During his time in Norman, Carter has played both strong and free safety and there really isn’t anything he can’t do for a safety at either position. This season in four games he has 24 total tackles and one interception. Over his career he’s been one of OU’s best special teams players. Smart too, having already earned his degree in sociology.

(2nd-Round) #86 DT Adrian Taylor, 6-4, 303 pounds, 4.96 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

It was a disappointing end to the ’09 season for Taylor when he suffered a dislocated left ankle in the Sun Bowl. After a long off-season of rehab, he must prove he’s back to the same level of explosion that he provided for the last two years playing next to his roommate Gerald McCoy. Smart in the classroom and on the field, Taylor is very strong in the upper body and has good speed for a man that weighs right at 300 pounds. He has nine career sacks, but hasn’t shown much pass rush potential. He’s had a very quiet ’10 season with only three tackles in four games. In the 3-4 defense, it looks like he would fit at defensive end.


(1st-Round) #4 CB Aaron Williams, 6-1, 192 pounds, 4.49 seconds, Junior.

Big, athletic and fast cornerback Williams hits all the prototypes of what NFL teams are seeing on the edge of the secondary. A starter last year in the Longhorns defense, he had 44 tackles, two sacks and three interceptions on the season. He missed one game due to a knee injury. Over the last two seasons Williams has been a big factor on special teams and has blocked four punts. Character is considered top shelf. In four games he has 14 total tackles, four tackles for loss, one sack, five passes broken up and two forced fumbles.

(1st-Round) #3 CB Curtis Brown, 6-0, 180 pounds, 4.42 seconds, Senior.

Brown has been contributing to the Longhorns on defense and in the kicking game since his true freshman season. Last year, he started 14 games, posting 53 total tackles, a forced fumble, a blocked punt, 15 passes broken up and an interception that he returned 77 yards for a TD. Overall, he’s played 42 games, has one interception, 88 total tackles. Showed up at Texas as a receiver, but his aggressiveness and athletic ability saw him shifted to the defensive side. Big-time special teams performer, with 33 career tackles on coverage. So far this year, he has 10 tackles and one interception that he returned 74 yards, along with three passes broken up.

(1st-Round) #1 OLB Keenan Robinson, 6-2 ¾, 232 pounds, 4.59 seconds, Redshirt-Junior.

Robinson came back this fall as the leading returning tackler on the Texas defense, as he racked up 74 total tackles last year. He followed that up by sharing the Big 12 defensive player of the week award in the first weekend of the season. Against Rice, Robinson had six tackles, recovered a fumble that he returned for a touchdown and had an interception. On the season he leads the Longhorns in tackles with 31, two for minus yardage, one sack and one interception. Explosive player who has become more savvy and is starting to understand the defensive scheme.

(3rd-Round) #81 DE Sam Acho, 6-3, 260 pounds, 4.72 seconds, Senior.

In 14 starts at defensive end, Acho was very productive in the ’09 Longhorns defense. He had 63 total tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, two forced fumbles, four recovered fumbles and 15 pressures on the quarterback. He’s shifted inside to start this year, but is back on the end. Despite the movement, he remains a productive performer. In four games this season, he has 16 tackles, six tackles for loss, three sacks, two forced fumbles and one recovered fumble. Over his time in Austin, he has been honored several times for his academic performance.

Wisconsin at #24 Michigan State, Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, MI, 2:30 p.m., ESPN


(1st-Round) #68 OT Gabe Carimi, 6-6½, 322 pounds, 5.12 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Carimi is the guy who replaced Joe Thomas as the Badgers left tackle after Thomas was the third pick in the 2007 NFL Draft (by Cleveland). He’s been at left tackle ever since that redshirt-freshman season, save for a few games missed in his sophomore season because of a knee injury. He’s also battled a shoulder injury in ’09. Excellent feet and quickness for a man his size and he excels at pass protection. How high Carimi is drafted will depend on what he can show in this senior season. His game has lacked consistency. If he finds that, he’ll be a top 15 draft choice. If not, he’ll likely go at the bottom of the round.

(3rd-Round) #84 TE Lance Kendricks, 6-2 ¾, 240 pounds, 4.69 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

When he arrived on campus in Madison, Kendricks was a wide receiver. But he grew into the tight end position and only a broken leg in ’08 has gotten him off the field since then. Everyone knew he could catch, the question was could he block and he’s shown growing confidence and ability handling those assignments. Earlier this year he had seven catches for 131 yards and a TD against Arizona State. He followed that up with six catches for 103 yards and a TD last weekend against Austin Peay. Over his career, he’s caught 52 passes for 796 yards and six TDs.

(4th-Round) #74 G/C John Moffitt, 6-4, 323 pounds, 5.26 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Over his career, Moffitt has played a lot of center (15 starts), while his primary position in recent seasons has been left guard (18 starts, including four this year.) He was a first-team All-Big 10 guard last year, and playing beside OT Gabe Carimi, the Badgers present an outstanding left side of their line. Moffitt missed two games in ’09 because of a pectoral injury.


(1st-Round) #53 ILB Greg Jones, 6-0¾, 235 pounds, 4.64 seconds, Senior.

Jones is coming off a season where he was a consensus All-America and ranked first in the Big 10 Conference with 154 total tackles that included nine sacks and 13.5 tackles for loss. As a sophomore, he was first-team All-Big 10, starting 13 games with 127 total tackles. Jones has led the Spartans in tackles for three straight seasons now. Some scouts compare him and his impact on the field to former Mizzou LB Sean Weatherspoon. Despite smallish size, he has speed and explosion to play middle linebacker. So far this season in four games he has one sack, 33 total tackles and two interceptions.

(4th-Round) #29 CB Chris Rucker, 6-1½, 195 pounds, 4.55 seconds, Senior.

In four games, Rucker has 30 tackles and has broken up two passes as opponents have decided to throw the other way. Over his career in East Lansing, he has played in 35 games with four interceptions, one fumble return for a TD and 157 total tackles, including two sacks and four forced fumbles. Rucker struggles at times in coverage and tends to peak in the secondary, and that allows receivers to get behind him.

(5th-Round) #83 TE Charlie Gantt, 6-4¼, 255 pounds, 4.87 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

A three-year starter at tight end, Gantt has four catches for 90 yards and a TD catch against Notre Dame. Over his 34-game career, he’s caught 45 passes for 740 yards and seven TDs. He’s got good hands and is a pretty good blocker as well. Gantt has shown the ability to get off the line of scrimmage and get deep on pass routes.

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