Commentary

New-look Big Board

Three new names jump into the picture, but there's a familiar one at the top of the rankings

Updated: September 7, 2011, 4:13 PM ET
By Mel Kiper Jr. | ESPN Insider

My first Big Board of the college football season came out last week, and very few players on the board got off to disappointing starts. Andrew Luck was efficient, Quinton Coples continued to pile up sacks, Matt Barkley was accurate, and Alshon Jeffery was his usual self. But there were a few question marks. Trent Richardson, the top running back in the class right now, didn't do much against Kent State, and Jerel Worthy looked a little sluggish.

There are a trio of new names here, and thus some players have dropped. Watch for more moves in the coming weeks. As always, juniors and draft-eligible sophmores are noted with an asterisk.

1
Andrew Luck *
AGE: 21
DOB: 9/12/89
HT: 6-4
WT: 235
POS: QB
Comp 17
Att 26
Pct 65.4
Yds 171
TD 2
Int 0

You know by now, Luck is the total package. Arm strength, size, smarts, demeanor -- it's all there. Can he keep the accuracy rate up? He completed 70.7 percent of his 2010 throws.

LAST WEEK: 1 | PLAYER CARD

2
Quinton Coples
AGE: 21
DOB: 6/22/90
HT: 6-6
WT: 285
POS: DE
Tkl 3
Sack 2
Int 0

Continues the recent run of defensive talent in Chapel Hill. Coples is next in line, a gifted pass-rusher suited to be a pure 4-3 defensive end at the next level.

LAST WEEK: 2 | PLAYER CARD

3
Matt Barkley *
AGE: 20
DOB: 9/8/90
HT: 6-2
WT: 220
POS: QB
Comp 34
Att 45
Pct 75.6
Yds 304
TD 3
Int 0

After a tough freshman year, Barkley has shown maturity and a high level of aptitude. Completed 62.6 percent of his passes as a sophomore and is piling up pro-style offense reps.

LAST WEEK: 3 | PLAYER CARD

4
Matt Kalil *
AGE: 22
DOB: 7/6/89
HT: 6-7
WT: 295
POS: OT
GP 1
GS 1

Kalil has the size, athleticism, footwork and bloodlines. He projects as a blindside tackle and is just another NFL-ready offensive lineman at Southern California.

LAST WEEK: 5 | PLAYER CARD

5
Alshon Jeffery *
AGE: 21
DOB: 2/14/90
HT: 6-4
WT: 229
POS: WR
Rec 5
Yds 92
Avg 18.4
TD 0

An imposing presence at wideout, Jeffery has been unstoppable. Phenomenal hands, surprising burst for a long-strider, great work ethic. Tough matchup for corners at any level.

LAST WEEK: 4 | PLAYER CARD

Mel Kiper Jr.

Football analyst