Prospect Preview: Taxslayer Gator Bowl

Look for Johnthan Banks to try and be a difference maker in this one (Photo: US Presswire)

BBD Editor Anthony D. Macari

In a match-up of two high powered offenses, the best player on the field to scout will be on the other side of the ball. Mississippi State Corner Jonathan Banks will try to contain dual threat Junior Northwestern QB Kain Colter and the Wildcat attack. The Wildcats will try to control the line of scrimmage and win the game with their rushing attack. The Bulldogs had visions of playing in a BCS Bowl after a red hot start, but after falling to National Champion Contender Alabama, they stumbled down the stretch. Look for the Bulldogs to get back to their early season level of play with eyes on bigger and better things next year.

Northwestern
OG Brian Mulroe #72 6’-4” 295
The strength of the Wildcat offensive attack is the big men up front. Mulroe is the anchor of a line that rushed for over 230 yards per game and only allowed an average of 1.3 sacks per game. Northwestern will try to control the game at the line of scrimmage and the war in the trenches will be the best place to watch. Mulroe is a late round prospect but could go sooner to a zone blocking team.

QB/ATH Kain Colter #2 6’-0” 190*
OT Patrick Ward #70 6′-7″ 310
DE Quentin Williams #88 6′-4″ 255
DE Tyler Scott #97 6′-4″ 265*
OLB David Nwabuisi #33 6’-1” 240

Mississippi State
CB #13 Johnthan Banks 6’-1” 185
Banks has a chance to be the top DB taken in April and will get a chance to show off his wares to NFL scouts at the Senior Bowl. Banks is a 3 year starter in the tough SEC and was awarded the Jim Thorpe award as the nation’s top defensive back. Banks by far will be the top rated prospect on the field and will face a team that likes to spread the ball around. While Banks may not be a burner, he is a polished and experienced defender who is not afraid to support against the run. Banks projects to either a cover 2 CB or Free Safety at the next level, though despite lack of straight line burner speed, could still stick at CB.

QB #17 Tyler Russell 6’-4” 220*
Russell is one to watch with an eye on the 2014 draft. He has a strong arm, good mobility and prototypical size. With another solid year playing in the tough SEC could find himself rising up draft boards in the future.

WR #1 Chad Bumphis 5’-11” 200
Russell’s go to receiver is Bumphis. He has some burner speed and is a load to take down once the ball is in his hands.

RB #27 LaDarius Perkins 5′-10″ 190 lbs*
OG #61 Gabe Jackson 6′-4″ 320 lbs*
DT #97 Josh Boyd 6′-3″ 300 lbs
OLB #10 Cameron Lawrence 6′-2″ 230 lbs
CB #9 Darius Slay 6′-1″ 190 lbs
CB #25 Corey Broomfield 5′-10″ 180 lbs
SAF #5 Nickoe Whitley 6′-0″ 205 lbs*

Prediction: Mississippi State 35 Northwestern 13

Tags: Chad Bumphis, Johnthan Banks, Kain Colter, Mississippi State, Northwestern, Tyler Russell

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