Rivalry Week is here and we are a week away from the conference title games kicking off as we head down the final stretch of the college football season. The postseason is already on the horizon for FCS teams as the opening round of the playoffs begin Saturday.
Prospects at all levels are attempting to put a bow on their résumé of 2021 games. While a few of the top guys in this class still have things to prove, others are trying to stamp their status and rise up the board for the 2022 NFL draft. Scouts, meanwhile, are trying to get a final glimpse at prospects ahead of all-star games next year.
In this week's player-to-watch series, I reflect back on the junior season of North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell, his improvement and the possibility that he plays in the Senior Bowl next year. I'll also dig into a few FCS prospects to keep an eye on this weekend, along with some of the best head-to-head matchups between draft prospects happening during rivalry week.
Five prospects to watch
Sam Howell, QB, North Carolina
Week 13 opponent: at NC State (Friday, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN)
2021 stats: 2,704 passing yards, 22 TD passes, 8 INTs