The first month of the college football season has offered its share of unexpected twists and turns. Which prospect has surprised you the most thus far? We posed the question to our panel of experts. Here are their answers.
- Gil Brandt NFL.com
Fournette proving he's rare talent
Expectations for LSU's Leonard Fournette have been high ever since he entered high school in 2010 and started as a freshman at St. Augustine High School in New Orleans. He rushed for more than 7,600 yards and had 88 touchdowns in his four-year high school career, and he was the first player ever to be selected Gatorade Player of the Year in both his junior and senior seasons. I have studied him very closely in three games this season, and Fournette is as complete a player as you will see at any position. In last week's game against Syracuse, he ran for a 62-yard touchdown and on the next series he had an 84-yard touchdown run called back due to an illegal-formation penalty. Later on, I watched Fournette make three pass-protection blocks and one blitz-pickup block. I also watched him catch passes, another area in which he excels. Fournette is a rare individual who doesn't have any weaknesses that I can see. I can't wait to see Fournette play against Alabama on Nov. 7. Alabama is really good on defense and it will be interesting to see how the Crimson Tide plays against Fournette.
- Chase Goodbread College Football 24/7
Gators WR not living up to hype
This was supposed to be the Demarcus Robinson's year at Florida, free from the dysfunction of Will Muschamp's offenses and poised to become the No. 1 receiver he has the talent to be. It hasn't happened. The Gators have gotten him involved enough for 20 receptions, but his explosiveness doesn't align with his 153 yards and average of 7.7 yards per catch. UF's youth at quarterback is one factor, but Robinson owns his slow start, too. He's been relegated as low as third on the depth chart at times, and word is he has seen what the inside of Jim McElwain's doghouse looks like.
- Charles Davis NFL.com
Star OT's absence a big disappointment
The prospect that has surprised me the most thus far is a player that has yet to see the field, and it's Ole Miss OT Laremy Tunsil.
I'm surprised -- frankly, I'm more disappointed -- that he has been sidelined due to an NCAA investigation because, selfishly, I was really looking forward to watching him play with the full glare of the spotlight on him. He's carved out a well-deserved reputation as one of the best left tackles in college football. He already missed a game against Alabama (tremendous front 7, led by DL A'Shawn Robinson), and tests against Texas A&M (led by sack master Myles Garrett) and many other respected opponents still await Ole Miss.
He's a terrific talent, and not being able to watch him play to see how he does with the full attention of the talent evaluators on him -- that's a disappointment to me.
- Lance Zierlein NFL.com
Cardale Jones failing to meet expectations
I will answer on both the positive and negative fronts. On the negative side, Cardale Jones has been very disappointing. His accuracy, decision-making and command of the game just hasn't been there even against lesser competition. On the positive side, it's been Notre Dame senior running back C.J. Prosise, who has averaged more than 9 yards per carry in each of his last three games while racking up 600 yards in his first four tilts. Prosise is running with great balance and is showing so much burst that he's gone from completely off my radar to someone I'm definitely keeping up with now.
- Chad Reuter NFL.com
Ole Miss WR impressive in bouncing back
Everyone knows Ole Miss star receiver Laquon Treadwell had talent, but he's really impressed me with his return from a gruesome injury suffered early last November. If any of the undefeated Rebels' early season opponents thought he would need time to get back to his former self -- they were wrong. He's averaged six catches and 96 yards per game over the past three weeks, and his 135-yard performance against Vanderbilt in Week 4 shows he's ready to lead his team to an SEC West title. Treadwell's downfield blocking is also impressive, showing he has no fear of injury.