A Few CFB Athletes Staying True to the Grind: Watch List
Tampa, July 27, 2018- Previously, we have been touching and adding on to our HSFB watch list, taking note of some thrilling playmakers with possible upcoming break-out seasons. What about the competitors making their mark at the National level, pushing to be a household name you ask? Here I give you 3 rising college athletes to keep in the back of your noggin upon the start of this 2018 season.
DB Kyle Gibson, UCF- Following UCF’s 2017 undefeated conference season championship, 5’11” 182-pound incoming senior Kyle Gibson is hungry to take on his leadership role in the secondary for the Knights, after presenting impactful and productive numbers this past season. Gibson aggressive demeanor makes up for being “undersized” as some might say, but it’s all about Mind over Matter. In 13 games Kyle posted 42 solo tackles, 22 assisted for a combined 64 total tackles, 2 for a loss, 4 interceptions- 26 yards included of those 4, defended against 4 passes, 2 fumble recoveries, and a forced fumble. UCF wasn’t recognized worthy of being seeded into the playoffs to compete for the National Title despite their perfect record efforts, but Kyle and the Knights will use that as fuel for the fire as they prepare for another successful year.
CB Mazzi Wilkins, USF- Mazzi is another guy on the outside secondary exemplifying physicality in his play style, the 6’ 176-pound Corner is consistently capable of high pointing the pigskin with ease aided by great vision and vertical, allowing him to hold an FBS Best 13 interceptions. In 2017, out of 12 games he tallied 32 tackles, 22 solo and 10 assisted, 0.5 for a loss along with 0.5 sacks and 3 interceptions, accumulating 9 passes defended. Needless to say, Wilkins is proficient at his defensive tasks all around and going into his senior year as well, he’s a valuable asset to the Bull’s defensive successes’ and as we saw last year they take the “defense wins’ championships” to heart- something they want to imprint as an everlasting message in their organization.
CB Isaiah Brown, FIU- The Florida International Panthers defense is bigger, faster and stronger thanks to perhaps an underutilized yet significant link in the secondary, 6’1” 178-pound upcoming junior Cornerback Isaiah Brown. His pursuit and awareness assist him in tracking contested balls and his ability to adjust, twisting his body for acrobatic plays are what make him a hassle to line up against- attached to your hip. Brown’s timing and judgment are also to be noted, near seamless at that, as he instinctively decides to deliver a hit or jump the route for a pic! In 4 games in his sophomore campaign, he collected 6 total tackles as teams tested his waters, defending 5 passes and was named a 2015 All-Hillsborough County Honorable Mention honoree in high school as a Tampa Bay Tech Titan.
Vaughan Sixbury, BCP Contributor