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F10Y CFB – Week 8 Scouting, LSU vs. Ole Miss

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Week 8 didn’t have too many stand out match ups, but this encounter between LSU and Ole Miss looked like it could be decent on paper, and it certainly was.

I’d seen these teams much earlier in the season, so I was eager to get some eyes back on them and see what they were like now we’re in the thick of conference play.

It certainly seems that LSU have turned a corner and look very much on an upward curve, and even in defeat the Rebels still look like a very talented team that can push the very top of the SEC to their limits.

We’ll start the scouting notes with the very impressive Tigers…


The quarterback position has been a bit of a struggle for the Tigers since Joe Burrow led them to their greatest ever season.

The fans don’t have to worry anymore though, as Arizona State transfer Jayden Daniels is playing out of his mind right now. He absolutely destroyed the Rebel defense to the tune of 242 yards and two touchdowns through the air, and 121 yards and three scores on the ground.

He has such a calm demeanour about him, stays cool under pressure and takes care of the football, all very important traits to have. He was impressive during his career with the Sun Devils, but he has taken it up another level here in the SEC and this won’t go unnoticed.

There are limitations and question marks when it comes to evaluating him for the NFL.

Like, how much does he actually weigh? Why does he struggle with short touch passes? And, how good of an arm does he actually have?

But as a college quarterback he certainly is an entertaining watch, and he is putting himself into the Heisman trophy conversation too, which isn’t bad for a transfer who wasn’t expected to even win the starting job in the summer.

On the receiving end of Daniels throws should be star wide receiver Kayshon Boutte, but I think it’s fair to say he isn’t having the season that everyone was expecting.

Boutte hasn’t been playing at 100% health wise, and there was a run in with new head coach Brian Kelly before the season, so there are factors to why he is struggling, but right now he looks a shadow of what we saw the past two years.

He had 4 catches for 43 yards in this game, which aren’t big numbers at all, and he did have a drop too, but he was out there blocking his ass off on run plays when bigger ego players might not have bothered.

With a wide open WR1 for the 2023 draft, Boutte is still in that mix, but if the production doesn’t increase he’ll have to wow the scouts in interviews, and with his athletic testing to reach that lofty goal.

The recent Tiger defense’s haven’t always lived up to the levels that their predecessors were famed for, but they always produce NFL talent year in year out.

The 2023 NFL draft will have plenty of Tiger defenders in it, and there’s certainly one who could be a first round pick. EDGE B.J Ojulari is that player with a first round shot, and in this performance against Ole Miss it’s easy to see why. He is the brother of NY Giants EDGE Azeez Ojulari, and they certainly have a very similar style of play.

He is lightning quick out of his stance, can convert speed to power nicely and can dip under and around tackles in the flash of an eye. He isn’t the biggest and can get washed out on some plays, but there’s enough elite talent here to get first round looks, and at worst case he should end up a top 50 pick, just like his brother.

The Tigers other EDGE Ali Gaye is someone I wasn’t as high on as others during summer scouting, and he hadn’t impressed me in the couple of early season games I caught, but he was terrific here and showed why he could be a day two player.

He lacks the athletic traits that his teammate Ojulari has, but Gaye is a much bigger end who defended the run in this game well, and still showed enough as a pass rusher to worry the young Rebel tackles.

Testing will be key for him, but he looked a different beast in this game to what I’d seen previously, and hopefully he can continue to put these types of games on tape. 

LSU knows how to produce cornerbacks, and the next one in line is Louisiana transfer Mekhi Garner.

He was part of a very stingy Ragin’ Cajun defense the last couple of years but decided to make the leap to the SEC and he has shone every time I’ve watched him. He was tested more in this game than my previous watches, but he came through well showing fluid transitions and good route recognition skills, which considering how big he is (6’2 217lbs) is very impressive.

Garner did give up a pass interference call on a quick slant where he was a fraction early on the play, but he really does look the part out there, and if he can answer the question about his long speed with good testing, he has the ability to be a round two guy for me.

It would be wrong if I didn’t mention true freshman Harold Perkins, who is having himself an excellent season. You can tell he is going to be a special player already, and although he is mainly lined up as an EDGE right now, with time you can see him moving inside to a more traditional off ball linebacker.

He could very well be the next Micah Parsons, we’ll just have to wait another couple of years before we get to talk about him in regards to the NFL draft. 


Any Lane Kiffin coached team is exciting to watch, and these Rebels are no different. Defensively they were found out in the second half, but the offense was a fun watch and they were just inches away on a couple of big plays that would have kept them up with LSU.

Quarterback Jaxson Dart is a true sophomore who transferred in from USC in the summer and has impressed so far this season at Ole Miss. He has nice touch, good arm strength and can be creative out of structure. He is also a very capable runner which he displayed in this game too, so a good all round package player.

Dart isn’t afraid to take a chance or two down the field, and that will get you into trouble at times as well, but let’s face it, we’d all prefer that type of quarterback over the boring efficient ones! Certainly a name for next year’s draft, which is shaping up to have quite a few top end QB prospects in it already.

It’s not often you get a transfer between Ole Miss and Mississippi State, but that’s what Wide Receiver Malik Heath has done, and it’s paying off handsomely for him. 

You’d have thought being a receiver in the Bulldogs air raid system would be a better fit for him, but he is having the most productive year of his career in this more balanced Rebel offense, and also showing scouts there’s a more complete receiver profile to him.

Heath is a big, strong pass catcher who displays really good hands and strength at the catch point. There’s a little bit of former Rebel A.J Brown about him, but not as dynamic as the current Eagle is.

He has impressed me every watch so far this season and he may be one of my favourite sleepers at his position for the 2023 NFL draft. 

The Rebel offensive line had struggles in this game, which isn’t surprising considering they were starting two freshman tackles. They do have two highly rated draft eligible guys on this Line, but both are having indifferent seasons.

Former Left Tackle turned Guard Nick Broeker was highly thought of during the summer, but I was never quite as high on him as the consensus was, and I’m still not.

For me, he struggled at tackle the past couple of years, so the move inside to guard was expected, but the level of play still remains inconsistent. There are nice flashes at times but there were so many plays in this game where he was beaten to his set points or just knocked off balance too easily, and it’s a big concern if he is still viewed as a top 100 type player.

I was much higher on former right tackle-turned-guard Jeremy James than most during the summer, but his move inside to guard for me isn’t playing to his strengths, and it’s causing him to slide down boards.

He is excellent in pass protection and staying at tackle would have showcased that more, but inside at Guard he is having to do more of the dirty work.

That said, he did consistently beat up on LSU defensive tackle Jaquelin Roy, who I’m pretty high on, so this tape is still good, I just wish he was out at tackle where I’m pretty sure he’ll be drafted to play in the NFL.

As I said earlier, this Rebel defense was torn to shreds in the second half of this game, but there was one stand out player who needs to get mentioned.

EDGE Jared Ivey is a transfer from Georgia Tech and he has taken the step up in competition to the SEC in his stride.

He has ideal size (6’5 265lbs) and length, and does a nice job rushing the passer from both the traditional outside role, and also inside as a three technique at times too. He has some decent bend to him and isn’t afraid to go through a lineman too if needed with brute strength, so plenty of nice traits to work with. He had a sack in this game, giving him 3.5 on the year so far, which is more than double what he managed in over 600 career snaps at Georgia Tech. Certainly a player on the rise, but as a true junior he may well go back to school to continue his progression and improve his draft stock.

Follow Keith on Twitter – @LordLucken

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F10Y CFB – Week 5 Scouting Notes, Clemson vs. NC State

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This was the game of the week for me, well on paper at least, as the two top dogs in the ACC, both top ten ranked, duked it out in a night game. The reality was that Clemson should have won by more than the ten points they did, and are now favourites to sweep conference play and get a good shot at the College Football Play-off.

We’ll start the notes with the winning Tigers…


I got a decent look at Clemson last week against Wake Forest, and the offense in that game looked so much better than it did for much of last season. This game was a bit of a mixed bag, but this was also the best defense that the Tigers had faced so far this season, so a regression from last week’s big output was expected.

Quarterback DJ Uiagalelei looked a different beast last week against the Demon Deacons throwing for 371 yards and five touchdowns, but he was back to a more conservative game plan against the Wolfpack, where the emphasis was on ball control rather than splash plays.

He did go deep a couple of times but he overthrew both passes and his overall accuracy is still a bit of a worry for me. Clemson have used him more to run the ball this year, and he does a nice job of getting what he can on the ground, but as a pure passer there are still many questions for me that need answering.

Obviously he is playing much better than last year, but I think he’s quite a way down the quarterback draft list still, although with that size and arm strength there will be plenty of intrigue if he does throw his name into the 2023 draft. 

Clemson have churned out some exceptional wide receivers over the last decade, but this current bunch are not living up to that standard. The Tigers have instead turned to a more run based attack, utilising the tight ends in the passing game, and they have a guy who may make it to the next level.

Davis Allen is a big target (6’6 250) with decent hands who looked good last week snaring two touchdowns and was a valuable outlet for his quarterback in this game too.

He has functional strength as a blocker, but he certainly won’t wow anyone in that department, although he does enough to survive. If Allen tests well he should certainly find himself in that mid day three range, and should make an NFL roster. 

Defensively, Clemson have three stud players, all of whom could be first round picks, but one of them Defensive Tackle Bryan Bresee was out of this game, so all eyes were on the other two…

I really like EDGE Myles Murphy – Who was highly rated in our summer scouting series.

He is bigger than most of the EDGE’s in this potential draft class, so he doesn’t possess the bend and dip of those smaller guys, but he does win with strength and quick hands consistently. This was an odd game for him, as statistically he had 1.5 sacks and a couple of pressures, but he was nullified for stretches of the game which doesn’t happen very often.

There was one pressure he went straight through the left tackle with power, and although not the level of athlete of some of the top guys, he can still win around the edge on the outside shoulder of the tackles. He is the same size (6’5 275) as last year’s number one pick Travon Walker but won’t test as well as he did, but he should be a first round lock, and possibly as high as the top ten.

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There is plenty of hype surrounding linebacker Trenton Simpson, but I’m not quite as high on him as the consensus seems to be.

There is no doubting his athletic ability as he glides around the field effortlessly, but for me there seems to be questions with instincts and that’s a concern for someone in the middle of the defense.

He has moved into a more traditional off-ball Linebacker position this season, as he was more out in the slot in 2021, so perhaps that explains some instinctual issues, but this will be his NFL position, so he needs to look better than this for the rest of the season to maintain first round status.

The old position Simpson moved from has been taken by true sophomore Barrett Carter, and this game was very much a coming out party for him. He has all the athletic ability that Simpson does, and although he doesn’t have the same size, he is a fearless player who understands his role perfectly. We could be talking about Carter in the same way we did about Simpson next season when he’ll be draft eligible.

NC State

This Wolfpack offense struggled to move the ball against Clemson, especially in the second half, as the offensive line couldn’t control the line of scrimmage. I like quarterback Devin Leary, but this game showcased his limitations.

When he has time, as he did in the first half, he can move this offense down the field nicely. What he has trouble with is coming off script and producing under pressure, which is how the second half went. I’m not sure there’s a lot of upside to him, but you can see him carving out a nice NFL career in a back-up capacity.

Leary’s most reliable target, wide receiver Thayer Thomas certainly appears to have an NFL future. Everyone needs one of these crafty slot receivers that can always get open and have safe hands, and Thomas is an excellent example of one. Not the biggest or the fastest, but he drops virtually nothing and is a consistent chain-mover. Call him a poor man’s Hunter Renfrow, who has an outside chance of going late in the draft.

Defensively NC State were very impressive at times, despite giving up 30 points. The three man defensive line has a thankless task at times, just occupying spaces and eating blockers, but these guys are excellent at doing it.

I’ve been a big defensive tackle Cory Durden fan for a long time, even back to his Florida State days he stood out to me. Now he is used exclusively as a nose tackle in their odd front, so he sees plenty of double teams and has to fight on every snap to keep lineman off him and keep in on the play.

Durden has a great get off and arm over move, which when timed right will split the double teams and get him into the backfield. His role will never offer him the chance to be statistically productive, but his value can’t be overlooked, and some NFL odd front teams should spend a day three pick on him for sure. 

The benefactors of the big guys up front are the linebackers, who can exploit the chaos and make the plays.

NC State has three good ones, all of whom could end up being drafted, but for me the highlight performer from this group against Clemson was Isaiah Moore.

He is a fifth year player who really burst onto the scene as a Freshman in 2018, but has never really kicked on. Injuries have played their part, and he missed half of last season with one, so he needed a good final year to get him back on the NFL radar, and this game tape should do that.

In this game, Moore was always around the ball and quick to react to plays developing in front of him. He is a good form tackler who wraps up nicely making sure the ball carrier gets down. Now I doubt he’ll test that well, and with the injury history to consider too he’ll be a late round pick at best, but these types of guys are always hanging around on NFL rosters.

I do love a hard hitting, play making safety, and Tanner Ingle certainly fits that bill. He flies around the field hitting anything that moves and will sacrifice his body to get in on a tackle. He is undersized for this role (5’10 185) and you’d expect that his body wouldn’t hold up in this role in the NFL, but I’m not backing against this guy as he has a bit of Tyrann Mathieu about him, and he turned out alright didn’t he?

By Keith Lucken – Follow Keith on Twitter @lordlucken

Catch the rest of Keith’s scouting notes HERE.

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Post Mortem Route : Tigers fall to FSU, 23-24

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A heartbreaking blocked extra point probably isn’t the way Brian Kelly envisioned losing his first game at LSU. Credit where credit is due though, Florida State played an amazing game led by their star QB and an amazing haul of transfers who showed out in a big way in a big game. 

Jordan Travis is the Florida man:

In the words of Andy Moore (@AJMoore21 on Twitter) “I told you so”.

I was sceptical of Jordan Travis coming into this game, even with my apprehension regarding LSU’s somewhat shaky secondary, he proved me wrong though and put the rest of college football on notice with an incredible performance that should have the rest of the ACC worried.

With that said the stat line of 260 yards and 2 touchdowns doesn’t really show how good he was all night. With LSU’s elite defensive front coming after him on every play Travis kept cool making plays with his arms and legs. He found Ontaria Wilson in the endzone twice, once with a beautiful flea flicker that left the LSU defence with their hands in their pockets and again when Wilson hauled in a one handed grab for one of the most impressive catches of the week.

Johnny Wilson and Myach Pittman also made their presence felt; seemingly unguardable for a majority of the contest and to round off the Seminoles attack, running back Treshaun Ward was also harder to bring down than Derrick Henry as he went up against one of the best defensive lines in college football. 

Florida State’s defence was also solid, not allowing LSU to get into a rhythm until late with Albany transfer Jarred Verse blowing past the LSU offensive line on almost every play. Verse racked up two sacks, three tackles and enough pressure to suffocate any signal caller out there.

Tatum Bethune and Renardo Green seemed to be everywhere as well, wrapping up LSU players left, right and centre ensuring finding the endzone was almost impossible for the Tigers.

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The All-American underachiever, Kayshon Boutte:

With 2 catches for 20 yards Kayshon Boutte very much disappointed last night especially as he’s the best receiver in college football (in my humble opinion). Boutte looked bothered and lethargic all night but is poised for a big bounceback as the Tigers face southern next week, probably just needed to shake the cobwebs off. 

Jayden Daniel’s looked shaky early behind a bad line, bad snaps and some bad reads. He managed to bounce back as the game progressed becoming the second LSU QB to pass for 200+ yards and rush for 100+ yards in a single game. Daniels found Jaray Jenksins twice for the end zone while hitting Mason Taylor, Brian Thomas Jr. and Malik Nabers as he moved down field. Nabers suffered the wrath of the LSU fan base this morning as his 2 dropped punts allowed FSU to get two scoring opportunities inside the 10 one of which was turned into points.

The LSU defence went exactly as expected, a shaky secondary exploited by a star QB when they should’ve been picking up slack from the offensive line that lost Maason Smith early to an injury and Ali Gaye to one of the most reckless plays I’ve seen from a player in a while. Despite his early trip to the medical tent BJ Ojulari looked solid all game with freshman Harold Perkins getting stuck in early and Senior safety Jay Ward showing his understanding of the defence and leadership skills as he helped control the defence from the secondary early on trying to pick up the slack left by his corners throughout the game. 

Oh and LSU’s kicker struggled, punter looked good though…

A disappointing outing for the new look Tigers but an absolutely stellar performance from FSU, a team I will very much look forward to seeing in the coming weeks. An ACC championship should be their goal now.

For more follow me on YouTube and twitter @KieranHorneCFB