In scouring the country for the most important matchups to keep an eye on this weekend (there are four more to dive into later in this post), one that jumped out at me was between Florida State Seminoles corner Xavier Rhodes and Clemson Tigers wide receiver Sammy Watkins, both all-conference players. However, the real key in that game could be how the Noles defend Watkins when Rhodes isn't covering him. It would be very surprising if Tigers offensive coordinator Chad Morris doesn't find ways to move Watkins around and get him away from Rhodes, the 22nd-ranked draft prospect on Mel Kiper's latest Big Board.
That's where opposite corner Nick Waisome comes in. He's replacing banished veteran Greg Reid on that side of the field. With all due respect to Murray State, Savannah State and Wake Forest, this is the first time the sophomore will see high-level competition.
"I want to go in there and [let him] have zero receptions," Waisome told the Orlando Sentinel this week.
Good luck with that. Watkins had 10 catches, two of them scores, last season against the Seminoles -- who were beaten down physically entering that game, a loss at Death Valley. Perhaps a more realistic goal would be limiting Watkins to half the production, although Waisome's talk likely stems from the fact FSU still hasn't given up a touchdown this season.
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