6/3 Roundtable - The September Star Players
Texas LB Sergio Kindle
Texas LB Sergio Kindle
Posted Jun 3, 2009

Which players will be the talk of the college football world by the end of September? From new stars to the ones who'll put up big numbers that will demand attention, here are some of the players to watch out for. It's the Wednesday topic in the CFN Daily Roundtable Discussion.

CFN Daily Roundtables

June 3

What player will generate the September buzz?

Over the next several weeks, as part of the CFN 2009 Preview, we'll examine some of the key questions going into the year with a daily discussion of the big topics.

Past Roundtables
June 2 The star teams of September?
June 1 The coach you'd want for one game
May 28 Should the Big Ten expand, and if so, then what team should be added?
May 27 Should the Pac 10 expand? If so, then what two teams should be added?
May 26 Chizik, Kiffin or Mullen?
May 25 Heisman race sleepers 
May 22 2009's most interesting teams

May 21 Is Tebow the best QB ever?
May 20 When should preseason polls come out?
May 19 Does 2008 Utah have a beef?
May 18 No BCS, No Weis?

Pete Fiutak, CFN

Yes, I'm part of the problem. You can check me out at twitter.com/CFN_Fiu and find out future roundtable topics and other site stuff.

Q: Which player will be the talk of September?

Every year there are players, former Purdue QB Kyle Orton, Ohio State RB Maurice Clarett, Northern Illinois RB Garrett Wolfe, and Texas Tech WR Michael Crabtree are the first who come to mind from past seasons, who have huge, breakout Septembers, usually coming from out of nowhere, and generate a national interest. Sometimes the production comes against lousy teams, and sometimes there's a big game on a national stage that kickstarts a career. Here are five guys who could be the talk around the college football watercooler on October 1st.

5. Eugene Jarvis, RB Kent State - The 5-5 senior is healthy, has a good line in front of him, and will have more responsibility on his shoulders now that running QB Julian Edelman is gone. While the Boston College defense will be good, Jarvis should be strong enough against the Eagles, to go along with home games against Coastal Carolina, Iowa State, and Miami University, to lead the nation in rushing after four weeks with over 600 yards.

4. Blaine Gabbert, QB Missouri - He's not going to be Chase Daniel right away, but a some point in the opener against Illinois he'll throw an 18-yard out pattern with the type of zip that'll make NFL scouts sit up straight in their seats. In each of the first four games against the Illini, Bowling Green, Furman, and Nevada, Gabbert will throw a deep ball that seems to hang in the air for an hour and a half (the type of throw that Daniel couldn't make with an Itza), and suddenly, Missouri fans will realize a whole new era of Tiger football has begun as the team goes 4-0 before dealing with Nebraska.

3. Colin Kaepernick, QB Nevada - The Wolf Pack might not beat Notre Dame in the season opener, but Kaepernick, a taller Vince Young with a better fastball will be the best quarterback on the field in South Bend. He'll run for over 100 yards against the Irish in a valiant effort, and ND fans will start wondering if the D is going to be lousy again. No, Kaepernick is that good. He just hasn't been seen in the national spotlight.

2. Sergio Kindle, DE/LB Texas - Kindle would be an All-American if he stayed at linebacker, but he'll step in for Brian Orakpo on the end and will lead the nation in sacks after four weeks. He's not as big as Orakpo, and he's not the same sort of weight room freak of nature, but he has a better motor and will be a more consistent pass rushing terror.

1. Matt Barkley, QB USC - Aaron Corp will start the season and will be fine, but nothing special. He'll put up big numbers against San Jose State, but will struggle against Ohio State in a tight battle. Barkley will step in for a series and won't give up the spot until he's taken by the San Francisco 49ers with the first pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Richard Cirminiello, CFN

Q: Which player will be the talk of September?

Baylor QB Robert Griffin. Sure, they know him in Texas and Big 12 country, but nationally his name would conjure up a series of blank stares. As a true freshman, he exceeded all expectations, giving Art Briles the triggerman he needs to run his high-octane offense and looking an awful lot like another No. 10 dual threat, who used to take classes in Austin. Without even having a full grasp of the system, he did a little bit of everything for the Bears, rushing for 843 yards and 13 scores, and throwing for 2,091 yards, 15 touchdowns, and just three picks. But wait, there’s more. Much more. The best is clearly yet to come for this 6-3, 200-pound wunderkind. Not only is he a year older and a little stronger, but he’s surrounded by the team’s top rusher, Jay Finley, and his two favorite targets, Kendall Wright and David Gettis. Griffin will once again put up fantastic numbers in an offense built to produce them, but that’s only part of the story here. More important, he’s on the brink of making Baylor relevant again, which will exponentially increase his profile once the season gets started.

Matthew Zemek, CFN

Q: Which player will be the talk of September?

Larry Smith - Quarterback, Vanderbilt. Naturally, players in the SEC receive a fair amount of attention, and quarterbacks--more than any other gridiron participants--represent the ultimate publicity magnets in the sport. Therefore, among the ranks of SEC quarterbacks, Smith would have to rate as a relatively quiet and unhyped figure. Based on how he pitched the pigskin in the early stages of the Music City Bowl against Boston College, Smith possesses the fluidity and throwing arm that could make the Commodores' passing game that much more potent. For a program coming off its first winning season and bowl bid since 1982, Smith is the kind of field general who could enable Vandy to remain dandy in 2009.

Jon Miller, Publisher, HawkeyeNation.com

Q: Which player will be the talk of September?

No attention?  OK, you asked for it; Austen Arnaud, quarterback for Iowa State.  This isn’t going to be a team that sets the world on fire this year, but they do have talent returning on the offensive side of the ball.  They also have a brand new head coach (Paul Rhoads) and a new Offensive Coordinator in Tom Herman, late of Rice.  Rice was 5th in the nation last year in passing offense as they put up Playstationish numbers.  Gene Chizik didn’t win much at Iowa State but he brought in a level of talent the Cyclone program has rarely seen in his two recruiting classes.  They have a sneaky strong receiving corps, experienced offensive line and a solid stable of running backs.  The spread offense will give Arnaud a chance to utilize his skill set and I think with three of four early games being opportunities to put up some pretty big offensive numbers, that Arnaud will show up on the college football radar in late September.  Especially if they upset in state rival Iowa in Ames on September 12th.

Hunter Ansley, Publisher, DraftZoo.com

Q: Which player will be the talk of September?

I’m taking the easy way out here, I guess. Todd Reesing isn’t unknown, but he hasn’t been spoken of this off-season nearly as much as other quarterbacks. Seems he’s been lost in the Big 12 shuffle. Everyone’s crooning over Sam Bradford, Colt McCoy, and even Zac Robinson, but Reesing may have the biggest stats come October. Over the last two years, Reesing has tossed 65 touchdowns to only 20 interceptions. He’s accumulated 7374 yards. But he still falls short in the eyes of most because he’s, well, short. But if you check last year’s September stat sheet you’ll notice that he put up an 11-2 TD-INT ratio with 1405 passing yards. This September should be even better. Gone from the early schedule are South Florida and Louisiana Tech, and in their place the Jayhawks get Duke at home and a “road game” at UTEP. The first four teams Reesing faces finished 56th (Duke), 85th (Southern Miss), and 112th (UTEP) against the pass in 2008. That’s not including FCS cupcake Northern Colorado. With Dezmon Briscoe and Kerry Meier back as Reesing’s two favorite targets and another year under his belt, Reesing could end up with almost 20 TDs by the time the season hits month two. That ought to generate some dark horse Heisman buzz a la Graham Harrell.