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Players to watch in College Gridiron Showcase all-star game

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Cathleen Allison/Associated Press
Dee Hart became a star for Colorado State is his one season with the team.

Saturday's College Gridiron Showcase all-star game doesn't have near the cachet of the Reese's Senior Bowl or even the East-West Shrine Game, but there will be some draftable players in the first-year event.

Saturday's game, in Arlington, Texas, begins at 2:30 p.m. ET and will be streamed on the game's website.


» Draft Tracker: Scouting reports on 2015 NFL Draft prospects


There are no prospects who will be taken on the first two days of the draft, but there are numerous potential third-day selections. Among them:

Alabama G Leon Brown: Brown is a mauler with good size (6-foot-6, 320 pounds), and NFL Media analyst Lance Zierlein said he "has the potential to make a team as a backup." He played two seasons for the Tide after transferring in from junior college, serving as a backup at tackle in 2013 and starting at guard this season. Zierlein says he strictly is a guard in the NFL.

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Texas WR John Harris: Harris (6-2, 218) basically was an offensive non-entity until this season. He had nine receptions for 190 yards in his first three seasons, then blossomed as a senior under a new coaching staff, finishing with 68 catches for 1,051 yards and seven touchdowns. He is a physical receiver who also saw some time at tight end during his career, and was a solid special-teams player. Harris also was a high-jumper in high school.

Colorado State RB Dee Hart: Hart (5-8, 189), who will attend the NFL Scouting Combine, began his career at Alabama and transferred to Colorado State for the 2014 season as a graduate transfer. He ran for 1,275 yards and 16 TDs for the Rams. His size obviously precludes him from ever being more than a situational player and special-teamer. But Hart -- who was a five-star recruit in high school at powerhouse Orlando Dr. Phillips -- has excellent quickness and is a make-you-miss kind of back. He had injury and off-field issues at Alabama.

Utah State DE B.J. Larsen: Larsen (6-5, 275) was a two-year starter for the Aggies, and Zierlein calls him "a high-effort, highly productive pass rusher." Larsen had nine sacks this past season and 17 in his career, and added 26.5 career tackles for loss. He is nimble for a guy his size, not surprising when you consider he was a member of his high school tennis team.

Baylor WR Levi Norwood: Norwood (6-2, 200) had a big season in 2013 with 47 receptions for 733 yards (15.6 yards per catch) and eight TDs, but lost playing time to more talented youngsters this season. He lacks top-end speed, but Zierlein says Norwood "has a unique ability to make tacklers miss after the catch with elusive hips rather than foot quickness" and that he "has a hidden accelerator when getting north-south after the catch." His dad, Brian, is a Baylor assistant, and he comes from a family of athletes: His brother, Gabe, was a starter on George Mason's 2006 Final Four team and his brother, Jordan, was a wide receiver at Penn State and for the Denver Broncos.

South Carolina DT J.T. Surratt: Surratt (6-2, 310) started for his final two seasons with the Gamecocks. "Surratt's effort is good inside the tackle box and he's tough at the point of attack, but he won't impress with production or game-changing plays," Zierlein says. Surratt is impressive with his ability to hold his ground against double-teams, and Zierlein thinks he can be a rotational player in the NFL.

Other familiar names include Northwestern LB Chi Chi Ariguzo, Arizona S Tra'Mayne Bondurant, Syracuse LB Dyshawn Davis, Kansas FB/TE Jimmay Mundiane, Alabama SS Nick Perry and Toledo LB Junior Sylvestre.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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