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Ask 5: Who's best player in Clemson-Louisville game?


The marquee matchup of the weekend in college football will take place in Louisville on Saturday night. Clemson and Louisville played a wildly entertaining game last fall and this year's contest has been marked on the calendar by NFL evaluators for quite some time. The Tigers are loaded with defensive talent, while the Cardinals have the most electrifying player in college football (and reigning Heisman Trophy winner), Lamar Jackson. Who's the best player in this game? I posed that question to five NFL personnel executives. Here are their answers.

College Football 24/7 Hot Topics:

Executive 1: Lamar Jackson
"Clemson has some studs on that defensive line, but Lamar Jackson will be the best player on that field."

Executive 2: Clemson DL Christian Wilkins
"Wilkins. He can align anywhere on the front. He's extremely disruptive and plays on the other side of the line of scrimmage vs. the run and pass. There's some Gerald McCoy to his game."

Executive 3: Jackson
"I'll go with the best playmaker and that's Lamar Jackson."

Executive 4: Jackson
"It has to be Lamar Jackson. Hands down. He's an incredible athlete and playmaker. Even though he might miss that easy throw in the first quarter, when the money is on the line, he gets it there. When he gets outside the pocket, he is special."

Executive 5: Wilkins
"I would go with one of those Clemson D-linemen. I like all of them but Wilkins would be my top choice. He can do everything. He's made huge plays in all three phases of the game. He can ruin a gameplan with his quickness."

Summary: That's 3 votes for Jackson and 2 for Wilkins.

Conclusion: I'm not totally surprised by these results. I thought Clemson DT Dexter Lawrence might garner some attention, but it's hard to argue with Wilkins getting two votes. Wilkins is a disruptive player and his versatility is a tremendous asset. Jackson received the most votes and I agree with the opinion of Executive No. 4. He does miss some easy layups, and that can look really bad on tape. However, the good far outweighs the bad. His combination of skills and competitiveness is off the charts. I believe Clemson has the better football team, but the best player on the field will be wearing a Louisville jersey.

Follow Daniel Jeremiah on Twitter @MoveTheSticks.



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