It's week 10 in college football, and with time winding down until the start of the College Football Playoffs, we have a pair of monumental match-ups that could make or break a quartet of seasons.
The first official "Top-25" list of teams was released earlier this week, but it is sure to change after today's action. Two of the top teams are in action against each other while the top team in the land is facing a recent champion.
Games To Wach
There are quite a few good matchups this weekend, but two stand out above the rest.
(16) Florida State at (1) Clemson (ABC, 3:30 p.m. ET) - Clemson has more than earned the honor of being the number one ranked team in college football. Not only do they have an explosive offense, but they also have a dangerous defense. They are a compete teams that can beat you almost any way they choose.
However Florida State is a dangerous team in their own right. Jalen Ramsey is considered by many to be the top defensive back in the country -- or at least draft eligible DB. Jabril Peppers in Michigan could be a Heisman contender next year. And while the Seminoles trail Clemson in both total offense and defense, this should be a great game, loaded with future NFL players on all sides of the ball.
(2) LSU at (4) Alabama (CBS, 8 p.m.) - The crown jewel of Saturday's schedule has two familiar foes in a familiar position. Every year it seems as though it comes down to LSU and Alabama with a shot at the National Championship on the line. This game promises to be a physical showdown with an absolutely electric atmosphere.
Sophomore phenom Leonard Fournette has carried the Tigers to second in the nation while he runs toward the Heisman trophy. One of the many story lines playing out in this game will be whether or not Alabama can slow him down, or if he will keep up his torrid pace against one of the best front 7s in the nation.
The Crimson Tide has their own running back for LSU to worry about, though. Derrick Henry is a 6-foot-3, 240-pound monster whose blend of size, open field speed, and power is reminiscent of the Giants' own Brandon Jacobs.
On the other side of the ball defensive tackles A'Shawn Robinson and Jaran Reed will be playing on Sundays, perhaps at an even higher level than they are now, and MIKE linebacker Reggie Ragland is a player the Giants need to be watching.
Where Are The Giants?
Normally I'd point you to the games at which the Giants have credentialed scouts as games to watch, but with the importance of the games in Florida St. and Alabama, I had to go there. But, if you are more interested in watching the games we know the Giants are attending, here's two for you:
TCU at Oklahoma St. (FOX, 3:30 p.m.) - These are two talented teams, but the Giants are likely most interested in OK St. defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah. He's a 6-4, 275-pound end with the power to stand up in the run game, but the athleticism to be a threat off the edge.
Minnesota at Ohio State (ABC, 8 p.m.) - Minnesota one of the best secondaries in college football, Briean Boddy-Calhoun and Eric Murray should make for a good challenge fornCardale Jones, but it is the OSU roster that has scouts salivating. Defensive end Joey Bosa is a difference maker who will likely be in the top two or three players selected come draft time. If we are looking at the front four of the Giants -- then we should look at defensive tackle Adolphus Washington and linebackers Darron Lee and Joshua Perry. Washington is a natural 3-technique who disrupts offenses with his length and athleticism. Darron Lee is a red-shirt sophomore, so he shouldn't be counted on in the draft. That being said, he is the same kind of hyper-athletic linebacker as 2014 first-round pick Ryan Shazier. Finally, Joshua Perry might be the Beezer Brigade's best hope. He is of a type with Devon Kennard. 6-4, 250 pounds, with long arms and the ability to play in space. He has also played every linebacker position and is reputed to have a tremendously high character and work ethic.
With the 21st pick of the 2016 NFL Draft, the New York Giants select ...
Emmanuel Ogbah, DE, Oklahoma State
We have to address the defensive front seven, and specifically the pass rush. Ogbah brings a nice blend of size, power, and athleticism for the position. He will be drafted with an NFL-ready physique and is already on of the top pass rushers in the country. He finished his Sophomore campaign with 11.0 sacks and 17 tackles for a loss; So far this season has 8.0 sacks, and was the Big 12 defensive player of the week after a West Virginia game that included a sack, a tackle for a loss, two forces fumbles and a defensive score.