Here’s what we’re hearing so far:
* Manti Te’o – The Notre Dame ILB is staying in school. Good. Had an okay year, but wasn’t sure of being a Top 20 pick. Probably would have gone in the 1st round, but just didn’t have the kind of season that warranted coming out. Doesn’t lack potential. Another year can help him refine his game.
* Still no word on USC duo LT Matt Kalil and QB Matt Barkley. Kalil said they’re a package deal. Both come or both stay. I expect them to leave, but you never know. Both guys will be Top 10 picks if they do come out.
* Utah State RB Robert Turbin is reportedly coming out. He’s had a monster year. 10th in nation with 1416 rushing yards. Also has 19 TDs. He is 5’10, 216 and extremely muscular. I watched him casually earlier in the year and was impressed. Should be fun to go back and study his games. Talented receiver as well as runner. Check out his numbers there (career): 66-838-11.
* Miami RB Lamar Miller announced that he’s coming out. Big time talent. Caught my interest with a good showing in the season opener and then had monster games vs Ohio State and Va Tech. One of the few RBs who will get 1st round consideration. Just a RS Sophomore. Canes DT Marcus Forston is coming out. Don’t think this is wise. Played in just 3 games this year. Has talent, but is an inconsistent player who could have benefited from more development at the college level.
* This draft class is light on top pass rushers and I’m sure that’s one of the reasons USC DE Nick Perry decided to come out. Perry (6’3, 250) led the Pac-12 in sacks this year with 9.5 and added 3 FFs. He’s got 21.5 sacks for his career.
* Rutgers WR Mohamed Sanu has decided to stay in school. Probably smart. This class has big guys like Blackmon, Floyd, and Jeffrey already at the top. Sanu can refine his game with more experience.
* Va Tech CB Jayron Hosley is reportedly leaning toward coming out. I need to study tape of him. Hasn’t jumped out at me when watching the Hokies, but CB is a tricky position.
* Miss State DT Fletcher Cox is considering coming out. 1-gap penetrator who can be very disruptive. At his best, very good player. Not always at his best, though. Lists at 6’4, 295. Had 12.5 TFLs on the year. 7.5 came in games against South Carolina and Kentucky. Watch those games and you’ll be convinced Cox is major star. Definitely has NFL potential. Another year would help him, but he is a quality prospect right now.
* Georgia LB Jarvis Jones has said he’ll stay in school. He should be a top target next year.
* Guys like Trent Richardson and RG3 have yet to declare, but I fully expect them to. They are coming off great seasons and are ready for the NFL.
* No word on Boston College star MLB Luke Kuechly. He’s close to graduating and holds plenty of records. As an individual, he’s got nothing left to accomplish in college. The one thing that could keep him at BC is not wanting to leave after the school’s first bad year in more than a decade. I hope he does come out, but it wouldn’t shock me for him to decide to stay. I think the Mark Herzlich scenario could help to push him out. Mark had a chance to be a high pick, but went back for his Senior year and then was diagnosed with cancer. He’s in the NFL now, but doesn’t have the 1st round money he would have gotten if he came out.
* No word on Arizona State star Vontaze Burfict either. He’s had a turbulent season, to say the least. Things didn’t end well. Check out this blurb from ESPN’s Pac-12 blog:
Put this way: Burfict was benched in what is likely his last game as a Sun Devil. When his coaches asked him to return to the game, he reportedly refused, according to the Arizona Republic.
Former ASU player and NFL star Danny White wasn’t a huge fan of Burfict’s.
When your best football player is a guy like that, he’s what I call a coach killer. He’s such a great athlete, you have to have him on the field. But by the same token, the negatives outweigh the positives with him. As great a player as he is, you can’ t have that. And then what happens, when if you don’t take extreme measures with it, then it becomes a cancer on the team. And I started seeing other guys on the defense starting to act like that and I think it became infectious.
* Tommy Street – WR – Miami
* Andrew Luck – QB – Stanford
* Justin Blackmon – WR – Oklahoma State