Each week, the scouting department at the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl will provide insight into some of the top prospect performances from around the nation! Be sure to keep up with our latest game announcements on Twitter @NFLPABowl.
On Friday night the fifth-ranked Cincinnati Bearcats handled business on the road, beating a struggling South Florida team 45-28. A big reason for Cincinnati’s strong performances on the defensive side of the ball has been senior defensive end, Myjai Sanders. Against the Bulls, he racked up only his second sack of the year, as well as a pass deflection but his impact is much more significant than the box score would indicate. Possessing great length, impressive speed, and power, he shows all the traits required to become a quality NFL pass-rusher.
His presence oftentimes makes his opponents frequently shift attention towards Sanders, leaving other defenders with easier matchups. The senior could have declared for the draft after an impressive 2020 season that saw him touted as a potential first-round pick but decided to return to Cincinnati, in order to take care of unfinished business. Sitting at 10-0, the Bearcats are well on their way to doing just that.
Full highlight tape Coming Soon 🤭
-“Coming Back for Everything” pic.twitter.com/9Wo01mWsQJ
— IAmMyjaiSlatt (@MyjaiSanders) February 18, 2021
Coming down the backstretch of the college football season, one player who has had an impressive year is UCLA nickel defender and safety Qwuantrezz Knight, who leads the Bruins in tackles. In their first victory at the Rose Bowl since the week two upset over LSU, UCLA beat Colorado 44-20. Knight was once again all over the field, totaling six tackles with a sack and two tackles for loss. Few nickel defenders in the country show the ability for timing blitzes and attacking the backfield at the right times as Knight does.
His improved tackling has allowed him to finish plays week in and week out. Having spent his first three seasons with the Maryland Terrapins, Knight joined Kent State for 2019 before being a graduate transfer to UCLA ahead of the 2020 campaign. The extra eligibility granted due to COVID-19 allowed him to return and help the Bruins reach bowl eligibility once more in 2021.
— Qwuantrezz Knight (@qknight4) November 13, 2021
One of the best running backs in the country is Arizona State’s Rachaad White, who has put up great numbers week in and week out without much recognition. In the Sun Devils win over Washington, he was a true workhorse once again running the ball 32 times for 184 yards while also leading his team in receiving with five receptions for 53 yards. A rainy game demanded White to carry the offense which he was more than capable of. At 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds, he can handle this kind of volume consistently, having surpassed 30 touches in the last two weeks.
After the game White said: “I like playing in the rain. That’s probably the best win in my entire life, in all honesty.” Offensive coordinator Zak Hill added, “That’s what makes him great, he wants to be out there, he doesn’t want to come out, he wants the ball and to give it to him more.”
Rachaad White: 32 carries, 184 yards, 2 TD. Unstoppable tonight in Seattle. pic.twitter.com/a3Rpd9ptZd
— DevilsDigest.com (@DevilsDigest) November 14, 2021
*For more insight on the 2022 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl process, including players who have caught our attention, be sure to tune in to ‘The State of Football’ every Thursday at 9:00 am eastern time, as executive director Dane Vandernat joins Lorenz Leinweber on Sports Illustrated!