Top players who will miss the season
With the start of the upcoming college football season right around the corner, we've decided to look at some of the top players that are expected to miss the upcoming football season.
Antonio Cromartie -- Florida State junior cornerback had successful surgery to repair the ACL, LCL and hamstring tendon in his left knee following a July injury....Cromartie, a truely elite cornerback prospect due to his unique size, speed and talent, is expected to miss the upcoming season--a severe blow for FSU's football program.
Joe Newton -- Had surgery to repair a torn muscle in the lower left leg, which is expected to sideline him for the season. Newton, who was red-shirted as a true freshman, turned into a truely elite tight end prospect in 2004 as a sophomore--56 receptions and 7 TD's.....Prior to the injury, some thought Newton rated as the best tight end in college football for the upcoming season. Crushing injury for Oregon State head coach Mike Riley, a truely classy person, and the Beavers football team.
Loren Howard -- Former Northwestern star will enroll at Arizona State after season ending knee surgery. Super-sized senior defensive end, who some thought had first round potential due to his amazing size, strength and athletic ability for such a large person....Was fantastic as a freshman and sophomore, before he started getting slowed down by injuries in 2004 (ankle, knee). When he does return, he'll have to show he's durable enough to play in the NFL.
Alley Broussard -- LSU's leading returning rusher in 2004 will miss the season after suffering a knee injury during an August practice at Tiger Stadium. We were told by a respected draft insider that Broussard has serious first round potential at some point (he's only a junior)....The injury is a tough one for LSU coaches and fans to take, but having experienced backs Joseph Addai and Justin Vincent to carry the football will help ease the pain and keep the Tigers running attack strong.
Blake Mackey -- Colorado wide receiver, a rising junior, will miss the entire upcoming season after suffering a torn ACL during an August practice....Mackey possesses excellent size, speed, athletic ability and has a knack for gaining big yards after the catch. He seemed to breakout in the 2nd half of the 2004 season for the Buffaloes, so this is going to be a tough injury for a team that lacks depth at WR.
Glenn Sharpe -- In July Miami cornerback Glenn Sharpe, a gifted junior who was expected to compete for a starting spot, suffered his third knee injury in two seasons....Sharpe's injury leaves Miami with 3 experienced cornerbacks -- Kelly Jennings, Devin Hester and Marcus Maxey.
Mike D'Andrea -- One of the most highly regarded recruits in the history of Ohio State football--that's saying a lot!....Injuries, however, have seriously affected D'Andrea's career and other talented linebacker's have since surpassed him on the Buckeye's depth chart....Talk in Columbus has him "possibly" red-shirting the upcoming season in order to shake the injury bug. If he ever does return to full strength, he's a definite NFL prospect due to his size (6' 3", 250) and top notch speed (4.5 40).
Reuben Houston -- Georgia Tech's starting senior cornerback was arrested this June in connection with a marijuana distribution operation based in California. Houston was Tech's top corner in a very talented secondary. Had been starting since his sophomore season. Has ideal size (6' 1", 190 pounds) to deal with big receivers and the speed to run with the faster ones....Prior to the arrest, seemed like a likely 3rd round pick....Will probably miss the upcoming season, but that should be least of his worries.
Jeff Backes -- Injuries to both shoulders have forced Backes to give up football early. Exciting, yet smallish cornerback, who excelled as a punt returner and a defensive back for Northwestern--All Big 10 caliber player.... This former NFL prospect (Day2/free agent type) will now enroll in Northwestern's highly acclaimed medical school.
Stephon Heyer -- Maryland Terps starting left tackle partially tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee at practice in mid August. At this point, it's uncertain if he'll return this season...Former Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award candidate has one year of eligibility remaining, if he decides to take a red-shirt....Projected as a possible mid-round selection prior to the injury.
Mike Williams -- Texas junior defensive end, who recorded six sacks as a sophomore, might miss his second consecutive season because of academic problems....Right now, he could decide to transfer to a Division I-AA school and play immediately once his academic issues are resolved....But it appears unlikely he'll play anywhere this season.
Wyatt Sexton -- Florida State's starting quarterback in 2004 will miss the upcoming season due to a severe bout with Lyme Disease (a serious illness brought about by infected deer ticks).....Sexton, a junior, was somewhat inconsistent at times in 2004, but he showed some promise, so this is a tough blow for Wyatt and the football team.
Marquess Ledbetter -- Tore a quadriceps tendon in his right leg while lifting weights. The injury will sideline him for the season....A smallish (6' 2" 260), but talenteed junior defensive end, who led Utes with five sacks and made 30 tackles, despite only getting the starting job five games into the 2004 season....extremely athletic--40.5 inch vertical jump is tied for best on the team.
Jeff Schweiger -- Extremely gifted sophomore defensive end for the USC Trojans had surgery in early August for a broken bone in his right foot. Unclear if he'll miss the upcoming season, but will be out of USC's lineup for an extended period of time....If the injury lingers too long into the season, don't be suprised if coach Pete Carroll red-shirts this potential future star in order to get him another season of eligibility.
Terrence Wheatley -- This talented Colorado junior cornerback has a very serious wrist injury and will "at least" miss the upcoming season. Wheatley, a rising prospect with super speed and athletic ability, had 4 Int's in 2004....Expected to team with fellow junior Lorenzo Sims to give Buffaloes a dynamic duo at corneback.
Biren Ealy -- After the 2004 season, Arizona kicked former impact wide receiver Ealy off the team due to academic reasons. Reportedly, he was headed to Division 1-AA Sam Houston State. However, it appears he will not be eligible to play for the SHSU this upcoming season due to academic issues, meaning his college career could be over....Ealy, a tall (6' 3") wide receiver, with reported 4.4 speed and ability to go deep, once looked liked an emerging Pac-10 star for the Arizona Wildcats. As a sophomore, he hauled in 42 receptions for 577 yards and 4 TD's for the Wildcats. But in 2004, as a junior, Ealy struggled with injuries and off-field issues. He played in just 7 games last season and had only 7 receptions for 143 yards and 1 TD....Despite the great size and speed, Ealy has lost some respect in the eyes of NFL scouts following a terrible 2004 season--both on and off the field.
John Sumrall -- In the fall of 2004, Sumrall was the Kentucky Wildcats leading tackler as a junior linebacker and played well enough to garner national attention--was named to Lott Trophy Watch List. A few days after being named to the Lott Watch List this spring, he named as a graduate assistant coach for UK because of a spinal condition that forced doctors to rule him out of football....Since early 2004, the Wildcat's have lost 3 impact linebackers, including Chad Anderson and Dustin Williams, who both just quit the team. Williams, due to his size and speed, seemed to be the best NFL prospect among the trio.
Jerry Seymour -- Tiny, sparkplug type junior RB got into a heap of trouble for allegedly lying to a grand jury during a theft investigation and was suspended from the Central Michigan football team. Rushed for 1,284 yards and 5 TD's in 2004. He also led the Chippewas in receiving with 47 catches last season....At this point, it's unclear whether he'll play this upcoming season, but we do know he is a high impact performer on the collegiate level.
Fred Sparkman -- Superstar high school recruit was making a huge impact for the North Carolina Tar Heels, until he bounced from the team in 2004 after being charged with marijuana possession. Just a sophomore last season, Sparkman averaged over 10 tackles per game, so his abscence was (and still is) a major hit for the Tar Heels defense....There were rumors that Sparkman would transfer, but as of a month ago, it was believed he'd sit out the season.
Eric Wright-- Sophomore Cornerback, who was an impact performer for the Trojans in 2004 as a freshman, was arrested in March on suspicion of sexual assault. A total of 136 Ecstasy pills were found in his apartment.....He has left USC and is currently enrolled Mt. San Antonio College, where he probably won't play football this season. If he does sit out this season, he could transfer to a Big 10 like Purdue or Michigan State.
Aaron Miller -- Huge offensive tackle was named to the All-SEC Freshman team in 2004 after a stellar rookie season for the Kentucky Wildcats, but simply walked away from football due to "personal reasons" this summer....Good news for Wildcats fans, is Miller has stated he'd like to return to UK to resume his football career at some point.
Deon Anderson -- One of the team's emotional leaders and fringe NFL prospect as a blocking fullback, Anderson decided to leave UConn and transfer to another school in June. At this point, no word where the senior from Providence, Rhode Island will land.....Media reports claim Anderson was probably nudged off the team by no-nonsense coach Randy Edsall due to a string of disturbing off-field incidents, which likely kept the tiny Storrs police department fairly busy during his Huskies career.
Gian Villante -- Hofstra University All-American linebacker, who is a high impact junior at the Division 1-AA level, will be sidelined for the upcoming season due to a knee injury, Pride Head Football Coach Joe Gardi announced in August....In his two seasons at Hofstra, Villante has recorded 206 tackles (21.5 for losses)....This is a major injury for the Pride's football program, which has struggled a bit the the last few seasons.