Week 10 of the NCAA football season brings with it yet another showdown for Oklahoma State and QB Mason Rudolph, this time against rival Oklahoma, and our very own Steve Palazzolo's top pick from our first mock draft of the season, QB Baker Mayfield.
Also included in our featured matchups of top NFL draft eligible players is an SEC showdown between two defensive powers in Alabama and LSU while two important ACC clashes may decide the conference champion.
LSU @ Alabama
When LSU is on offense:
- The Tigers offense is paced by the play of RB Derrius Guice, who had his best game of the season in LSU's last game against Ole Miss. Guice ripped off 276 yards, 130 of those coming after contact and forced three missed tackles on his 22 carries. He has now forced multiple missed tackles in six of his seven games this season.
- Their leaders on the offensive line – Toby Weathersby and Will Clapp – have combined to allow just eight QB pressures, on their 343 snaps in pass protection, but they'll have their hands full with the Alabama front seven.
- On the opposite side of the ball, Alabama is anchored by a star-studded list of names, including arguably their best player along the front seven, interior defender Da'Ron Payne. Of Payne's 360 total snaps, 219 of them have been spent rushing the passer, in which he has accumulated 17 total pressures (a sack, four hits and 12 hurries) and batted down two passes. Behind him, namely is Shaun Dion Hamilton who has graded positively at every facet for an inside linebacker this season. He has 11 stops on the year in run defense and missed only two tackles on opponent's ball-carriers, on his 27 tackle attempts.
- The Alabama secondary popped off the page at season's beginning, however, it's the lesser-known Levi Wallace who leads the country with his paltry 5.1 passer rating when targeted. Wallace has seen 35 targets thrown into his coverage, allowed just 11 of them to be caught, for 103 yards and has intercepted three of them, while allowing not a single touchdown.
When Alabama is on offense:
- LSU's Arden Key had a slower start to his season than anticipated, but has turned it on as of late. He has recorded multiple quarterback pressures in his last three games, including the game-clinching sack on Auburn QB Jarrett Stidham in Week 7. 13 of his 18 total pressures this season have come in the last three games, and he'll need to continue that, going against a stout Crimson Tide offensive line.
- Alabama's starting offensive line has allowed 30 combined pressures on QB Jalen Hurts, only two of which have been sacks. The running back duo of Damien Harris and Bo Scarbrough have each made their presence felt against SEC opponents this year, averaging 6.07 and 3.25 yards after contact per attempt against SEC foe, with Harris' 6.07 tops among the conference's backs.
- Crimson Tide WR Calvin Ridley has not quite had the season that was anticipated out of him in terms of receiving, however he still is second in the conference with his 517 yards through the air, 184 of which have come on deep passes as he's hauled in four balls targeted 20 or more yards downfield, two of which were touchdowns.
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