Top 10 College Players Who Could Opt Out of the 2020 Season
Caleb Farley made headlines Wednesday by announcing he would opt out of the 2020 college football season to focus on the NFL Draft. With the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus and losing his mother to an illness in 2018, Farley didn't want to take any chances.
Whether you like it or not, this will be the latest trend in college football. Players are finding their voice, and also realize that they control the decisions they make for their careers. It's been a great year for college athletes, and while those decisions might affect our fandom of the sport, it's good for college sports. Virginia Tech will miss Farley and what he brings to the table, but it's the best decision for him, and many others will follow. Who else should opt out for the 2020 season? It's not a fun to think about, but these guys might also consider sitting out the upcoming year.
QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson
What more does Trevor Lawrence have to prove? Scouts are already putting him at the top of their big boards, and it's unlikely that they'd find enough weaknesses to drop him that far. He has the arm talent and resume to be a Top 10 pick, and no one would blame him if he sat out with all of this uncertainty.
QB Justin Fields, Ohio State
This is a little harder to believe. Fields is coming off of a 50+ touchdown season, but remains behind Lawrence in the eyes of evaluators. It's a big year for a team that's looking to avenge a loss to Lawrence's Tigers, but losing Fields would brings that goal to a halt.
RB Travis Etienne, Clemson
Etienne came back to finish his career and classes, but maybe he'd change his mind now. Injuries are always a concern, but now he could get the virus which would also put him out for a while. He returns over 4,000 yards and 62 touchdowns for his career, but sitting out might be the best thing for his future.
RB Demetric Felton, UCLA
Again, this article is in no way implying that these kids should give up on their teammates. But some of these players would be better off sitting out for the year. Felton's one of those players. UCLA and Chip Kelly can't seem to get much momentum going, and it's tough to see Felton doing anything that would increase his draft stock significantly (to no fault of his own). Felton's a versatile player who will be on nearly every team's board, so he could just let his previous work speak for itself. Unless UCLA as a team elevates into a contender, Felton would be a prime candidate to sit the year out.
WR JaMarr Chase, LSU
Is there anything else Chase needs to do? He's coming off a career year (1,780 yards, 20 touchdowns), NFL scouts and analysts love him, and he's already the best receiver in college football. He's another player that surprisingly returned for another year of college ball, but could change his mind if he didn't want to risk getting the virus.
TE Brevin Jordan, Miami
I was torn putting Jordan on this list. On one hand, sitting out would limit him from more opportunities to get hurt and let teams evaluate his potential from his previous seasons. On another, his role in Rhett Lashlee's offense could launch him into the Top 10. There's no guarantee that Jordan can find chemistry with quarterback D'Eriq King though, and a less than stellar season could hurt his draft stock.
G Trey Smith, Tennessee
As if Smith didn't have enough to deal with, getting the coronavirus would add to the list of things he's battled. His heart condition is already on NFL team's radars, and it's not like that can go away. If anyone deserves to take a season off, it's Smith. The last thing he needs is another mark on his health, and his play already speaks for itself.
OT Penei Sewell, Oregon
It sounds like a broken record, but what more does Sewell need to do? He's the only returning starter on Oregon's offensive line, and teams wouldn't hesitate to send more pressure his way to test him. His stock really can only go down at this point, an he's already an All-American talent who's a potential Top 5 pick in the draft.
DT Marvin Wilson, Florida State
He's 6'5", 305 pounds with plenty of power and athleticism. What more do teams need to know? Florida State's a team that could surprise college football though, and Wilson would play a big role in that.
LB Micah Parsons, Penn State
Despite being the best linebacker in college football, this one's the toughest to imagine. Parsons is on a mission this year to overthrow Ohio State in the divison and bring Penn State to the playoff. He's already achieved the personal accolades, but he returned to college for something bigger than himself. It's tough to see a virus stopping him from continuing on that path.