Week 13 of college football is rivalry week! Across the country, century-old feuds play out another chapter in what is one of the best weeks of sports in the year. With these high stakes games comes pressure on the best players in the country. Here are some names I am watching.
Tahj Brooks, Running Back, Texas Tech v. Texas (Friday, 7:30 PM on ABC): Tahj Brooks is far from a household name, but he is one of the best running backs in the country this season. Brooks game is sort-of one dimensional, but it is a really good dimension. The 5’11”, 230 pound back is a handful to tackle and can tire defenses over the course of the game. Texas will be no easy going for The Red Raiders, but Brooks could be their key to controlling the clock and the game.
Troy Franklin, Wide Receiver, Oregon v. Oregon State (Friday, 8:30 PM on FOX): Oregon does not normally churn out wide receiver prospects and Troy Franklin could easily be the best Duck pass catcher to come out of Eugene since Ahmad Rashad was drafted in the first round in 1972. Franklin is a long limbed, speedy receiver with good hands and great ball skills. Oregon needs to win this game to stay in the playoff hunt and Troy Franklin will need a big game against the Beavers tough secondary to give the Ducks a shot.
Mike Sainristil, Cornerback, Michigan v. Ohio State (Saturday, 12 PM on FOX): The Game is must watch television every year, but this year features a two top-three teams vying for a playoff berth. Ohio State will come into this game ready to feed Marvin Harrison Jr. and the Wolverines will need to do anything to stop them. Mike Sainristil has been a revelation in the Michigan secondary this year. A few years after switching from wide receiver to cornerback, Mike Sainristil has picked off five passes this year and returned two interceptions for touchdowns. He is a feisty, play making cornerback and will need to deliver big plays against Ohio State’s offense.
Malik Nabers, Wide Receiver, LSU v. Texas A&M (Saturday, 12 PM on ESPN): Tuning into LSU’s offense is a must these days. Jayden Daniels is playing at a different level than most of the rest of the country while Malik Nabers has simply dunked all over secondaries this year. The Daniels/Nabers show is an absolute treat and you might as well watch them put up more historic numbers against the Aggies.
Keon Coleman, Wide Receiver, FSU v. Florida (Saturday, 7 PM on ESPN): Florida State is in a bad way right now after Jordan Travis got knocked out for the season. The undefeated Seminoles have playoff aspirations but need to win out if they want a shot. That will mean the supporting cast stepping up even more. Keon Coleman has been awesome for Florida State, scoring eleven times this year on only 45 catches. He will need to keep being an efficient playmaker to help Tate Rodemaker out for the rest of the year.