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Booms and Busts: Week Seven

Christopher Crawford

Weird week, folks. Weird week.

Week 7 Booms

Kentucky WR/QB Lynn Bowden -- 78 yards passing, TD; 196 yards rushing, two TDs -- vs. Arkansas: We didn't think we'd ever be doing an update on a quarterback throwing for 78 yards, but, this is obviously a special circumstance. With Terry Wilson out for the year and backup Sawyer Smith not healthy enough to play, Kentucky turned to the versatile Bowden as their signal-caller, and all things considered, he responded beautifully. It certainly helps that the Razorbacks' defense is a mess -- and give Kentucky credit for putting Bowden in position to succeed; we see so many coaches in these types of situations be stubborn, and the Wildcats certainly weren't that -- but it's Bowden who deserves the credit.

LSU QB Joe Burrow -- 293 yards passing, three passing touchdowns-- vs. Florida: Burrow threw three touchdowns, which is good. Burrow threw three incompletions, which is even more impressive. The fact he did it against a legit defense? Well, you get the picture. Outside of maybe Tua Tagovailoa -- who went off for four touchdowns (again) on Saturday against Texas A&M -- there has not been a quarterback that has been as impressive as Burrow. Can you even imagine us writing that watching him play at this point last year? If you can, you're either a liar, or you are a very, very big fan of Louisiana State football.

Arizona State QB Jayden Daniels -- 363 yards passing, three passing touchdowns; rushing touchdown -- vs. Washington State: A quick note, Washington State is much, much worse than we thought. But enough about them. Daniels was as hyped as any freshman in the county, and while there have certainly been ups-and-downs, Saturday was a big up. The biggest play was his rushing touchdown that gave the Sun Devils the victory, and you can view that impressive play right now, if you'd like. 

There's still work to be done, but Daniels has huge upset, and Arizona State is a clear contender in the Pac-12 South. 

Notre Dame RB Tony Jones Jr. -- 176 yards rushing -- vs. USC: With Ian Book not having his best game, the Fighting Irish needed a big game from Jones Jr., and they certainly got one. The only thing the redshirt junior didn't do on Saturday was score, but he helped set up several scores for the Fighting Irish in a victory over their long-time rivals. There's nothing Jones Jr. does that really stands out, but there's no real weakness in his game, either. This makes three straight games over the century mark, and it'd be a surprise if Notre Dame didn't call Jones Jr. number often in two weeks when they take on Michigan. 

Oregon RB CJ Verdell --  171 yards rushing -- vs. Colorado: We don't talk enough about the Friday games in the Booms & Bust; mainly because the games aren't often very good. This one wasn't very good, either -- a 45-3 shellacking by the Ducks over the Buffaloes -- but it did feature an excellent effort by Verdell. The sophomore ran for 1,018 yards and 10 touchdowns last year for Oregon, but had been an inconsistent contributor over the first five games of the season. He showed off his big-play ability in the victory with a 70-yard scamper, and made several other quality runs in the blowout win. We expect to see more of the same from Verdell as the season progresses.

Iowa State RB Breece Hall -- 132 rushing yards, three touchdowns -- vs. West Virginia: Hall was a four-star recruit by the Cyclones who had a total of 84 yards in his previous five appearances. He obliterated those numbers on Saturday in the 38-14 victory over the Mountaineers. Iowa State is looking for the long and short-term options to replace David Montgomery, and based on what we saw Saturday from the 6-foot-1, 2015-pound tailback, it appears that Hall can be just that. 

Oklahoma WR CeeDee Lamb -- 10 receptions, 171 yards, three touchdowns -- vs. Texas: Whew. Lamb was outstanding on Saturday in the Red River Shootout, and as big of reason as any that Oklahoma came away with a 34-27 victory over the Longhorns. Lamb showed his ability to high-point the football, find openings in the Texas secondary, and once the ball is in his hands, he's very tough to tackle. He's scored in every game for the Sooners, and he's picked up three touchdowns in two of the last three. Simply put, Lamb has been dominant, and there's absolutely no reason to believe it's going to change anytime soon. 

Arizona State WR Brandon Aiyuk -- seven receptions, 196 yards, three touchdowns -- vs. Washington State: Again, Washington State? Not so good. Doesn't make the efforts from Daniels and Aiyuk any less impressive, however. After two years of being a contributor but far from a star, the 6-foot-1, 198-pound wideout has emerged as a competent replacement for N'Keal Harry as the go-to target, and he simply dominated the Cougars on his way to a career best in yardage and touchdowns. The senior is starting to get more and more draft hype, and anyone who watched this one understands why. 

Wake Forest WR Sage Surratt -- 12 receptions, 196 yards, three touchdowns -- vs. Louisville: There were lots of quality performances this week, and a lot of the big numbers came from this game alone. Wake Forest took their first loss of the season, but it came in a 62-59 shootout with the Cardinals, and once again, Surratt impressed. The 6-foot-3, 215-pound wideout is already up to eight touchdowns on the year, and his 39 catches have nearly matched the 41 the sophomore put up as a freshman in 2018. The system he's playing in certainly helps, but with that size and the ability to create more separation than you might think, Surratt deserves your attention.

Colorado State WR Warren Jackson -- 9 receptions, 214 yards, two touchdowns -- vs. New Mexico: For a program that quite frankly hasn't been all that good as of late, Colorado State sure has been able to produce some quality wideouts, and Jackson appears to be the next. It's not like this game comes out of nowhere, either, as this is a follow up to a 12-catch, 132-yard effort the previous week against Toledo. With 6-foot-6, 219-pound size, Jackson is sure to intrigue scouts with that frame, and also with the production. This wideout class is absolutely loaded, but here's yet another player you need to pay attention to if you follow the draft, and we're guessing that you do if you're reading this. 

Week 7 Not Boom and Not Bust

Texas A&M QB Kellen Mond -- 264 yards passing, two touchdowns; 90 yards rushing -- vs. Alabama: Yep, we created a new category for the week, and it's because Mond's performance created so much to think about. At least in these eyes. Yes, the Aggies lost by three scores (47-28), yes, he had 18 incomplete passes, and yes, some of these numbers were created when the game really was out of reach. It's also worth pointing out that the game was mostly out of reach because Texas A&M had no chance of stopping the Crimson Tide offense and Tagovailoa, and Mond's effort with his arm and legs really should have been enough. Long story short, Mond's performance needed to be mentioned, but it didn't belong in the boom, and it certainly doesn't belong in the bust category.

Week 7 Busts

Georgia QB Jake Fromm -- 295 yards passing, touchdown, three interceptions -- vs. South Carolina: Oh dear. To be fair to Fromm, one of those interceptions was a dropped pass that ended up in the hands of Israel Mukuamu. The other two interceptions -- which also ended up in the hands of Mukuamu -- were absolutely on Fromm, and the junior signal-caller played one of the worst games of his collegiate career in the 20-17 loss to South Carolina on Saturday. There were certainly other Bulldogs who struggled in the loss to the Gamecocks -- and of course, you gotta give credit to South Carolina for creating some of the inaccuracy -- but this was mostly about the bad decisions Fromm made. Obvious point is obvious, but this is a big blow for Georgia's playoff hopes. In turn, it's also a big blow to Notre Dame's playoff hopes; as they really needed the Bulldogs to go without a bad loss. All due respect to South Carolina, but this was very much a bad loss.