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NFL Draft prospects to watch: December 30 bowl games

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 12 Louisville at Clemson Photo by John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Another day of Bowl Season! Despite some players sitting out and getting an early start on NFL Draft preparation, there is still plenty of future pro-talent out on every field. Here are some names to watch. (All listed times are EST.)

Duke’s Mayo Bowl, 12 PM on ESPN

Drake Thomas, Linebacker, NC State: Drake Thomas is the leader on the Wolfpack defense. The speedy, physical linebacker is deployed in a variety of ways and will need to be all over the field against a multiple Maryland offense today.

Sun Bowl, 2 PM on CBS

Jared Wayne, Wide Receiver, Pitt: Pitt’s lineup has been left a little bare after opt-outs and transfer portal entries, but Jared Wayne will be a welcomed presence on the field for the Panthers today. Wayne was the primary target in Pitt’s passing game, going over 1,000 yards in the regular season and coming off a huge 200 yard performance against Miami. Wayne has great size at 6’3” and 210 pounds, using well as a possession type receiver. Expect the senior pass catcher to see the ball a lot today.

Zach Charbonnet, Running Back, UCLA: Zach Charbonnet’s participation is a bit of a surprise today, but no less exciting. Charbonnet is the engine of the UCLA offense with his hard running style and surprising speed. There were only three games this year where Charbonnet had less than 20 carries so he should see a bulk of the touches against Pitt’s undermanned defense.

Jake Bobo, Wide Receiver, UCLA: Jake Bobo was a revelation in his first year playing at UCLA. The 6’5” Duke transfer was a favorite target for Dorian Thompson-Robinson, using his huge frame to win contested catches on a regular basis. Against a Pitt defense missing so much of their starting talent, Bobo should feast.

Gator Bowl, 3:30 PM on ESPN

Jarrett Patterson, Guard, Notre Dame: Jarrett Patterson has been a constant presence for the Irish over his career, spending multiple seasons at center before starring at guard this year. Patterson is tough as nails, with a high motor and great anchor. Today will be a good showcase against SEC talent.

Brandon Joseph, Safety, Notre Dame: Brandon Joseph had a really solid year at Notre Dame after transferring from Northwestern. Joseph is a versatile and physical safety who will get a great test against a South Carolina team that likes to stretch the field.

Juice Wells, Wide Receiver, South Carolina: Antwane “Juice” Wells dominated at James Madison last year before transferring to South Carolina where he made a fool out of SEC corners all season. Wells has a good, strong build, decent speed and excellent ball skills. Today, he will face a Notre Dame secondary that features Brandon Joseph and freshman star, Benjamin Morrison. A big game could decide if he goes pro.

Orange Bowl, 8 PM on ESPN

Darnell Wright, Offensive Tackle, Tennessee: The Volunteers have much of their NFL talent opting out, but Darnell Wright is a legit top 50 talent at offensive tackle and will hang in there for one more game. Wright has immense size and length to lock down the edge, with strong hands to nullify defensive linemen. Wright will have his hands full with Clemson’s predictably talented defensive line.

KJ Henry, Edge, Clemson: With Myles Murphy and Trenton Simpson sitting out of this game, all eyes will be on the rest of Clemson’s talented defensive front. KJ Henry has been a steady force on the edge of the Clemson line, winning with a good motor and athleticism. He is a good prospect in his own right and will have a chance to show off with Murphy out of the game.

Bryan Bresee, Defensive Tackle, Clemson: Bryan Bresee is one of two talented interior defenders for the Tigers. He has flashy pass rushing skills and good size with even more room to grow physically. Tyler Davis, Defensive Tackle, Clemson: Davis is Bresee’s running mate on the inside of Clemson’s line. He is a stout defender with a very good motor, making him an every down defender.

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