Week 4 of college football is upon us! If you’re new to this article, the goal is to bring you the top dynasty prospects to watch in nationally televised college football games. It’s never too early to take a look forward. Who is going to be the sleepers of upcoming rookie drafts? Check back here every week for my ‘Weekly Watch’ series before you head into the weekend. Use this article each week as a place to refer back to as you get ready to watch each game.
How this article works:
I’ll give you the network, time, and teams playing in nationally televised games. Below that, I’ll list the respective schools’ prospects that are, in my opinion, worth mentioning, their position, the year they are eligible to enter the NFL Draft, and their listed heights and weights.
Feel free to reach out on Twitter (@tristancook_) if you have players you think deserve to be mentioned in next week’s article. But, hopefully, this will give you a few names to monitor throughout the year.
#12 Notre Dame @ #18 Wisconsin
Saturday, 9/25 | 12:00 PM ET, FOX
#12 Notre Dame
Kyren Williams #23, RB 2022 (5’9, 199)
The first game we have here features one of the best potential running backs in this class. Or, I believe the potential 2022 class. This is Williams’ third year at Notre Dame, but he only played three games in 2019. And, because of the unique Covid waiver, this could also technically be his redshirt freshman season. The critical thing to remember is that there will be a bit of uncertainty with some players in the next couple of years. Anyway, Kyren Williams is an extremely talented back. He’s leading the rushing attack and is the second-best receiving option for the Fighting Irish. You’ll hear his name called frequently.
Michael Mayer #87, TE 2023 (6’4, 251)
The other prominent name to know is TE Michael Mayer. He had quite an impressive freshman season in 2020, but he didn’t stop there. Mayer has taken his game to another level and has been nearly an unstoppable weapon at times. Look for him to be heavily targeted, especially in crucial situations. Mayer is going to be a great TE prospect, as early as 2023.
Chris Tyree #25, RB 2023 (5’9, 190) – HONORABLE MENTION
Jake Ferguson #84, TE 2022 (6’5, 244)
There’s another TE in this game to be aware of, and he plays for the Badgers. Jake Ferguson isn’t the high-profile TE prospect that Mayer is, but he’s quite skilled in his own right. The TE position is challenging to project to the NFL level. But, I think that Ferguson has all the tools and the physical size to be a weapon. He leads the team in catches, so expect to hear his name.
Chez Mellusi #6, RB 2022 (5’11, 204)
There are two RBs to know for Wisconsin. The first is Clemson transfer, Chez Mellusi. After being somewhat buried on the depth chart for the Tigers, Mellusi transferred to Madison and beat out incumbent Jalen Berger. I was surprised because I am relatively high on Berger, but Mellusi has looked good. He’ll be the leading man for the Badgers.
Jalen Berger #6, RB 2023 (6’0, 203)
The other RB is second-year RB Jalen Berger. After not recording a rush in the opener against Penn State, Berger rushed the ball 15 times in the blowout against Eastern Michigan. I still believe that he has the talent to be an impact player, but right now, he’s buried behind Mellusi. It will be interesting to see if he can reclaim the lead role over time.
Graham Mertz #5, QB 2022 (6’3, 227) – HONORABLE MENTION
Texas Tech @ Texas
Saturday, 9/25 | 12:00 PM ET, ABC
Tyler Shough #9, QB 2022 (6’5, 225)
There’s only one guy to know on the Texas Tech side of the ball, and that is Tyler Shough. He has looked good since arriving from Oregon before this season. Shough has a good arm, is completing nearly 68% of his passes, and has the size that NFL teams traditionally covet. He could be a candidate to rise up draft boards as the season and pre-draft process plays out.
Bijan Robinson #5, RB 2023 (6’0, 214)
The real focus of this entire game is on Texas star RB Bijan Robinson. He is viewed by most as the top RB prospect in the 2023 class. There’s still a lot of time before he’ll lock up that title and the 2023 class projects to be incredibly deep, but Robinson is at the top of the list. He has good size and speed and does everything that you want from a back. Robinson is off to a strong start so far this year. So, I am excited to see what he does against Texas Tech.
Xavier Worthy #8, WR 2024 (6’1, 160)
The other player to know right now for Texas is freshman Xavier Worthy. He has only played three games in college, so it’s very early, but Worthy has looked exciting in his first season. Most of his production came in the opening week against Rice, but Worthy has been Texas’s most explosive receiving option. So, if Texas takes a shot, expect it to be him.
#7 Texas A&M @ #16 Arkansas
Saturday, 9/25 | 3:30 PM ET, CBS
#7 Texas A&M
Isaiah Spiller #28, RB 2022 (6’1, 215)
There are several relevant players to know for Texas A&M, but I want to focus most on Isaiah Spiller and Jalen Wydermyer. First, we have one of the projected top backs in the 2022 class in Spiller. After a challenging game against Colorado, he bounced back to have 117 yards on 15 carries with a TD. It was against New Mexico, so the level of competition wasn’t quite the same. Spiller is on track to be one of the top backs in this class, if not the top guy.
Jalen Wydermyer #85, TE 2022 (6’5, 255)
Wydermyer is the other big-name prospect to know for now on A&M. He is in his third year for the Aggies and is the TE1 in the 2022 class. He certainly has the frame to be a dynamic weapon at the NFL level. But, as I said, TE is tough to project. The one thing I know is that he’s nothing like the prospect that Kyle Pitts was. He can still be outstanding, but this is not as strong of a class as 2021.
Ainias Smith #0, WR 2022 (5’10, 190) – HONORABLE MENTION
Treylon Burks #16, WR 2022 (6’3, 225)
The guy to know for the Razorbacks is junior WR, Treylon Burks. He has been the best weapon so far for Arkansas. It’s easy to see why he’s in the top tier of WRs for 2022. Burks looks like he can fit into the traditional outside WR role, with the ability to make insane highlight-reel catches. I am a big fan of Burks, and he will likely be near the top of rookie drafts, or at least projects to be as of now.
Trelon Smith #22, RB 2022 (5’9, 190) – HONORABLE MENTION
#9 Clemson @ NC State
Saturday, 9/25 | 3:30 PM ET, ESPN
DJ Uiagalelei #5, QB 2023 (6’5, 250)
It might be time to be a bit concerned about DJU and how he has looked in his first season as the full-time starter for Clemson. He has yet to eclipse the 200-yard mark through three games and only has thrown one TD with two INTs. This Clemson team doesn’t quite look like what we are used to seeing, and that starts with the QB position. He did bump up his accuracy and decision-making this past week against Georgia Tech, completing 72% of his passes. But, I have an eyebrow raised for the future.
Justyn Ross #8, WR 2022 (6’4, 205)
The next name is one you’re probably quite familiar with. Ross is a guy that’s easy to root for after his scary injury before last year. But he’s also an insanely talented WR that is looking like the player we remember. As usual, I expect to see him involved heavily, and whenever he declares, he should have first-round potential. It will all come down to the medical for him because the talent is easily there.
Will Shipley #1, RB 2024 (5’11, 205)
The last name for this week for Clemson is freshman RB Will Shipley. He has a long time until he will be potentially relevant for the NFL. But he was just named the starter for the Tigers and looked good in his last two games. He is a former 5-star recruit and was the second-ranked RB in the 2021 class. Shipley should be dynamic carrying the ball but can also be a weapon out of the backfield. Get used to his name now; you’ll hear it for a while.
Zonovan Knight #7, RB 2022 (5’11, 210)
NC State has a pair of RBs that are worthy of note. The first one is Zonvan Knight. He has been the more dynamic of the two this season, rushing for nearly 300 yards on only 35 carries. He hasn’t been used out of the backfield as a receiver much at all, but there’s no denying Knight’s ability on the ground. I expect to see the Wolfpack try to control the game by running the ball as much as possible, so these two should be heavily involved.
Ricky Person Jr. #8, RB 2022 (6’1, 222) – HONORABLE MENTION
#14 Iowa State @ Baylor
Saturday, 9/25 | 3:30 PM ET, FOX
#14 Iowa State
Breece Hall #28, RB 2022 (6’1, 220)
The main player to watch during this game is RB Breece Hall. He’s likely not a new name to anyone that’s in tune with college football. But, he is still one of the top backs in this class. I’d say I expect him to be the top guy right now once the NFL draft is here. There’s a lot that can change between now and then, but he’s my RB1 for 2022.
Xavier Hutchinson #8, WR 2022 (6’3, 210)
Far and away, the best receiving weapon for the Cyclones has been Xavier Hutchinson. He has more than twice as many catches and yards as the second-best player for Iowa State. At 6’3″, he’s also a threat in the red zone and on jump balls. I think as Iowa State gets a little bit more of a national spotlight, so will Hutchinson. I have been a fan for a while now, so I’m hoping he continues to shine.
Charlie Kolar #88, TE 2022 (6’6, 260)
The last player of note here is TE Charlie Kolar. Outside of the Hutchinson above, Kolar has been the next best-receiving option. He trails Breece Hall for the second-most receptions but has been significantly involved. Kolar is a big target as well, standing at 6’6″, so he creates mismatches and could be at the NFL level as well.
Brock Purdy #15, QB 2022 (6’1, 220) – HONORABLE MENTION
Tyquan Thornton #9, WR 2022 (6’3, 182)
The player that I want to mention for Baylor is senior WR Tyquan Thornton. I wrote about him a while back, and unfortunately, he hasn’t quite developed as I hoped. His best season was still his sophomore year in 2019, when he had 782 yards and five TDs on 45 catches. He didn’t look particularly great in the COVID shortened 2020 season, but perhaps he can revive his NFL chances this year.
West Virginia @ #4 Oklahoma
Saturday, 9/25 | 7:30 PM ET, ABC
Leddie Brown #1, RB 2022 (5’11, 216)
The name to know for West Virginia is their RB, Leddie Brown. He is in his fourth year and is easily the best weapon on the Mountaineer offense. Brown is a former 3-star recruit and isn’t exactly a promising NFL prospect. He will be a significant part of the game plan for WVU. And if they have any chance of pulling the upset, he will likely be a big reason why. Keep your eyes on #1.
Spencer Rattler #7, QB 2022 (6’1, 205)
The 2021 season for Oklahoma has been a bit of an underwhelming one, and it starts with Rattler. He hasn’t exactly looked bad, but he isn’t tearing up defenses like the Heisman hopeful we expected. He, and OU, didn’t exactly inspire anyone last week with their 23-16 victory over Nebraska either. I fully anticipate Rattler to get it on track and put up monster numbers. And, I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts that this week.
Eric Gray #0, RB 2022 (5’9, 205)
The next name isn’t new either, and that is RB Eric Gray. He hasn’t been the best back for OU this year; that would be Kennedy Brooks. But Gray is still the superior talent in my view and has a much better chance at seeing success at the NFL level. I do think Brooks has an opportunity as well, but I’m not as high on him.
Marvin Mims #17, WR 2023 (5’11, 177)
Finally, the last name is another familiar one and another underwhelming one. Marvin Mims came into the year with big expectations and looked great in the opening shootout with Tulane. He caught five passes for 117 yards but only has three catches for 51 yards in the two games since. Like his teammates, I’m not worried about Mims. It’s just been a disappointing start to the year. Perhaps this will be his get-right game as well.
Arizona @ #3 Oregon
Saturday, 9/25 | 10:30 PM ET, ESPN
Stanley Berryhill III #86, WR 2022 (5’11, 190) – HONORABLE MENTION
CJ Verdell #7, RB 2022 (5’8, 211)
The prominent names to know and watch are on the Oregon side of the ball. And in all reality, the only significant name at this point is CJ Verdell. He’s been impressive on the ground and in the passing game. Verdell has the most receptions and receiving TDs and the second-most receiving yards for the Ducks. This offense runs through Verdell, and I fully expect him to be on display against Arizona. If you are catching PAC12 After Dark, be prepared for a full dose of Verdell.
Mycah Pittman #4, WR 2022 (5’11, 206)
The other name I will note is WR Mycah Pittman. He hasn’t been the team’s best receiving option, but I believe he is currently their most talented option. He has an excellent opportunity to make a statement this week against the Wildcats. I’ll be watching to see if he finally can stake his claim as the top WR for Oregon.
Johnny Johnson III #3, WR 2022 (6’1, 199) – HONORABLE MENTION
That’s it for this week’s games. As I previously mentioned, if there is anyone you’d like me to take a look at, or want to share your thoughts on anything dynasty-related, hit me up on Twitter ( @tristancook_ ). Also, check out the tape on some of these guys in the Dynasty Nerds’ Film Room. And, if you’re interested in joining the #NerdHerd? Use the code “tcook” for 15% off any membership. Sign up here and get an edge on all of your league mates today! You can get access to the DynastyGM tool (including our Trade Calculator and new Trade Finder), the Prospect Film Room, an extra weekly podcast, full rankings, and much, much more!
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