College Preview: September 18 Night

CLEMSON AT #16 AUBURN, JORDAN-HARE STADIUM, OPELIKA, AL, 6 P.M., ESPN

CLEMSON

(1st-Round) #93 DE Da’Quan Bowers (right), 6-4, 278 pounds, 4.64 seconds, Junior.

Coming into this season Bowers had played started 17 of the last 25 games he played in, with 105 total tackles, 19 tackles for loss and four sacks. He missed two games in ’09 to a knee injury. Some scouts view him as very versatile, and could play DE in both the 4-3 and 3-4. If he decided to leave after this season, there’s little doubt he’ll go in the top half of the first round.

(1st/2nd-Round) #2 SS DeAndre McDaniel, 6-0, 212 pounds, 4.54 seconds, Senior

He played in 40 games coming into this season, with 22 starts and productive numbers: 212 total tackles, two sacks and nine interceptions. McDaniel has good size and speed for the safety position. He also loves the contact and will come up in run support or come flying on the blitz. McDaniel’s has had off-field issues – he was arrested in 2008 for assault and battery involving a campus altercation with a 19-year old woman.

(3rd-Round)#12 CB Marcus Gilchrist, 5-10 ½, 193 pounds, seconds, Senior.

A durable corner, he has not missed a game over three seasons due to injury, playing in all 40, with 15 starts coming into this season. Gilchrist did all that while being very active and productive, with 107 total tackles last year, with one sack and six passes broken up. He’s played at free safety, on the corner and in the slot, showing his versatility as a defender. His hands are questionable, given the fact he’s not intercepted a pass in his first three seasons.

(4th-Round) #61 OT Chris Hairston, 6-6 ½, 325 pounds, seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Returning starter at left tackle for the Tigers over the previous two seasons, he missed two games last year with an injury and also missed two games in ’08 due to a moped accident. Hairston is big and sometimes looks awkward in his movements. Scouts would like to see a little more fire about of him.

AUBURN

(4th-Round) #73 OT Lee Ziemba, 6-5, 320 pounds, 5.22 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

A four-year starter, Ziemba has been available and durable over his career at Auburn and now has 40 consecutive starts. He did have off-season knee surgery in 2009, but came back and played all 13 games last season. Very quick on his feet and that allows him to make up for some of his fundamental deficiencies. Despite quick feet, he has trouble with speed rushers to his outside. Some NFL scouts like him as a guard. His last name is pronounced Zim-bah.

(6th-Round) #27 RB Mario Fannin, 5-10 ½, 228 pounds, 4.54 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

His career has been held back by injuries, as he was limited last year by an ankle problem and then in ’08 by a dislocated shoulder that required surgery. In the first two games of the ’10 season he has just eight carries for 20 yards and a fumble. He’s also battled a shoulder injury.He’s played in 38 games and started 12 times. Fannin has shown he’s almost as good a receiver as he is runner, catching 80 passes for 812 yards and seven TDs. He ran 172 times for 971 yards and six scores. Scouts think Fannin runs too high, but he shows very good balance and bounces off of tacklers easily.

#6 TEXAS AT TEXAS TECH, JONES AT&T STADIUM, LUBBOCK, TX, 7 P.M., ABC/ESPN2

TEXAS

(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.

(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.

(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. 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 this year and still remains a productive performer. Over his time in Austin, he has been honored several times for his academic performance.

TEXAS TECH

(3rd-round) #68 OT Terry McDaniel, 6-6 ½, 335 pounds, Redshirt-Sophomore.

It would be a major surprise if McDaniel came out after this college season. He would improve his lot so much with a strong sophomore and then a big junior performance next season. But no matter when he comes out, McDaniel already has scouts talking about him and his size and abilities. He sat out the ’08 season and then played is games with four starts in ’09 before a injury finished his season. Dad is a high school coach in Texas.

(5th-round) #93 DT Colby Whitlock, 6-1 ¾, 300 pounds, 4.97 seconds, Senior.

The coaching change with Mike Leach out and Tommy Tuberville in meant a change in the Red Raiders defense from the 4-3 to the 3-4. Whitlock has made the transition with ease and he’s been productive. He missed the spring game because of a jaw injury that required surgery. During his time in Lubbock, he’s played in 41 games and has 133 total tackles, six sacks, two forced fumbles and 22 tackles for loss. Whitlock has not missed a game in his college career.

(6th-round) #25 RB Baron Batch, 5-9, 200 pounds, 4.51 seconds, Redshirt-Senior.

Batch ran for 100 yards in Tech’s victory in the Alamo Bowl over Michigan State, scoring two touchdowns. He also caught six passes in the game for 85 yards. Earlier in the ’09 season, he ran for 136 yards against Oklahoma. Batch lost the end of the ’06 season and a redshirt ’07 season due to an Achilles injury. In his career he has played 35 games, run 315 times for 1,769 yards and 24 touchdowns. He’s caught 110 passes for 895 yards and two TDs. In the first two games of the ’10 season, he has 84 yards rushing and 10 receiving yards with two TDs.

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