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College Football Opening Week Open Thread

For a professional team looking to improve, college football season means a chance to look for future role-players and stars. Here’s an open thread to talk about college games in the present and potential Bears players of the future.

North Carolina v Miami
This time last year, who other than Pace had an eye on this guy?
Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

It’s the first weekend of college football, and unlike during the preseason of the NFL, there are some competitions that really do count about to take place. To be fair, the really exciting competitions start next week. However, there is plenty of fun football to watch to ease back into the game, and there are a few players worth watching for a preview of what they might offer some pro team in just a few months.

So far, we’ve been trying to highlight players we are keeping an eye on in the hopes that they might someday contribute to the Beloved.

  • For our SEC Profiles, look here [Link].
  • For our Big 12 favorites, check out this piece [Link].
  • For the B1G 10, take a look at these profiles [Link].
  • If you are more interested in the PAC-12, you can find those players here [Link].
  • Those who want to review ACC prospects can look here [Link].
  • Finally, don’t sleep on these non-Power 5 players [Link].

If you just want a quick visual on who WCG has highlighted, here are some defensive players we think are worth keeping an eye on:

As you can see, we are very greedy when it comes to defensive prospects (27 total), and we see a lot of talent worth watching. Meanwhile, on offense, things are a little thinner with only 14 profiled players:

I think the difference in emphasis has more to do with the uncertainty of the offense and Chicago fans’ love of defense than it does any actual tendency toward more defensive talent than offensive talent being available. After all, we want to get Leonard Floyd some help while we see what Mitchell Trubisky is bringing to the table.

So, how much of that is on display this weekend? Well, not as much as we might like. There are still some interesting games, though. Starting at 11am CST, ESPNU will carry FAMA @ Texas Southern.

Other games include the 1:30pm showdown between Oregon State and Colorado State. Though we didn’t profile them, it’s worth keeping an eye on undersized (but promising) linebacker Manase Hungalu and lean, aggressive cornerback Xavier Crawford, both playing for Oregon State. That latter one might be even more interesting because Colorado State wide receiver Michael Gallup is getting buzz in some places (I have watched none of his play, so I cannot say whether or not he’s worthy of the buzz, though).

Then, at 2:00pm, Portland State goes to BYU. A few hours later, Hawai’i has a 5:00pm match-up at UMass, but good luck finding the game anywhere. If you can find it, look for the Warriors’ Trayvon Henderson and Meffy Koloamatangi. If they can put together some good film, they might start generating some buzz.

Of course, there are a couple of big games to cap off the evening. Ranked #19 before the season begins (for whatever that’s worth), South Florida goes to San Jose State for a game at 6:30. Then, in a down-under match-up, Stanford (#14) faces Rice at 9:00pm. When it comes to the Stanford game, I am keeping an eye on tight end Dalton Schultz while Jacob is interested in seeing how cornerback Quenton Meeks performs.

College football is back, and that means that there’s a chance to watch meaningful games and to speculate about the future. In any event, tell us what you’re thinking below, but please Open Thread responsibly.