There’s very little at stake in most of the football bowl games, with just four teams battling for a National Championship. While it’s nice to see perennial powers like Georgia and Ohio State line up for one last game, or UCF go for back-to-back undefeated seasons, most teams won’t have much riding in these match-ups. Even some highly-touted NFL prospects—like presumptive top-10 picks Ed Oliver (DT, Houston), Rashan Gary (DT, Michigan), and Greedy Williams (CB, LSU)—are skipping marquee bowl games to focus on the upcoming Draft.
But for some players, the bowl season offers a final showcase to improve their draft stock. While our boycott on the NFL still stands, we’ve compiled a list of players to keep an eye on before they take the field for their final collegiate games.
Rose Bowl: Washington vs. Ohio State
Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
This year’s quarterback class features a glut of decent prospects, with only a few standouts. Oregon’s Justin Herbert has the most buzz but there are rumors he could return to Oregon for one more year.
Even if Herbert enters the draft, OSU’s Haskins could still be the best QB prospect. Haskins flashed plenty of potential as a redshirt sophomore. He may have finished a distant third in the Heisman race to Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa and trophy winner Kyler Murray of Oklahoma, who also a case as possibly the best QB in this draft, but Haskins solidified himself in that top tier. He has a big-time arm and brings the kind of mobility NFL teams crave.
Honorable Mention: Tyree Jackson, QB, Buffalo (12/22 Dollar General Bowl, vs. Troy)