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Boca Raton Bowl features two intriguing edge rushers

Keep an eye on these prospects.

NCAA Football: MAC Championship-Northern Illinois at Buffalo Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Anyone excited for a little Tuesday night football? The beauty of bowl season is you basically get a game to watch every day of the week for three weeks and tonight is no different. The 7 PM Boca Raton Bowl on ESPN will feature an 8-5 NIU team and a 10 win UAB team. While. Either team has high profile prospects, both teams have a pass rusher who will draw a lot of NFL interest.

More notably, NIU’s Sutton Smith has been one of the most productive pass rushers in college ball over the last two years. With 29 sacks, seven forced fumbles and countless tackles for a loss in that time, it’s easy to see why he’d be of interest. At six foot and a tad under 230 pounds, some may consider him a possible position shift in the NFL. It’s true, the junior had speed and reaction ability that would suit him as an off ball linebacker. His pass rushing ability just becomes a huge plus. It is a wonder if the smaller school, undersized junior prospect declares for the draft, but few would blame him if he did, given how productive he has been.

For UAB, they’re ability to bounce back over the years after a short term shuttering a few years back has been nothing short of remarkable. Many players have been factors in this 10 win season, but most interesting is their senior defender Jamell Garcia-Williams. Garcia-Williams stands towering at 6’8” and weight about 255 pounds. He is an extremely physically impressive player and it’s easy to imagine his best football is still ahead of him. Garcia-Williams totaled 9.5 sacks this year and contributed as a run defender, but there is a lack of consistency to his game. Garcia-Williams is nearly unstoppable at his best, but lack of technique hurts him occasionally. Teams will be intrigued by his athleticism and size, however and tonight is his last chance to make an impression.

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