NCAAF: Corey Carmona’s Top 5 College Football WRs

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College football is almost here, I can practically hear the roar of the crowds echoing in my ears as we gear up for another exciting season of NCCA football. I’ve already released my preseason Heisman favorites, link at the bottom of this article, now I’ve decided to break down the various positions & formulate a top 5 for you guys. I’ve already done my top five signal callers & running backs now it’s time for the wide outs. Just like the backs, we saw a ton of wide outs enter the NFL draft this past season so there’s a lot of unproven guys ready to step up into the elite status & make a name for themselves.

5. Mike Evans – Sophomore – Texas A&M
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Mike Evans actually has the 2nd most catches & yards on this list but falls in at number 5 for me which isn’t a knock on him at all. Evans had a great freshman campaign catching 82 passes for 1,105 yards & 5 touchdowns as A&M stunned the country with their stellar first year in the SEC. A lot of people worry about Evans as a number one because he doesn’t possess the elite speed that most of these wide outs on this list have but he makes him for it being sure handed & a polished route runner.

Evans, like Parker, is a smart route runner & understands the concept of running a route, knowing he has a big body at 6’5 225; he uses his body to shield off defenders giving Manziel a good clean target to deliver to. With Ryan Swope gone to the NFL, Evans looks to be the guy for the Aggies going forward I expect big things from the big guy in 2013 as A&M attempts to make a run for the national title.

4. Stefon Diggs – Sophomore – Maryland
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A lot of you will make the argument that Diggs belongs higher on this list & to be quite honest I will not argue with you on that one the kid is phenomenal. He’s a menace in the open field & one of the most dynamic returners we have in college football. Diggs retuned 25 kicks in 2012 for 713 yards & 2 touchdowns while adding 221 punt return yards on top of that. The kid is truly a special talent & what’s scary is he’s only getting better.

Diggs caught 54 passes in 2012 totaling 848 yards & 6 scores; I fully expect those numbers to go up this year. His ability to catch an underneath pass and take it the distance will pay huge dividends for Maryland & will without a doubt give defensive coordinators headaches week in and week out. Stefon Diggs is an elite talent & while Maryland isn’t in the national title picture this kid makes them a tough challenge with his ability to affect the game in special teams as well as on the offense, I’m looking forward to watching his game grow & improve this season.

3. DeVante Parker – Junior – Louisville
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DeVante Parker is a big kid with strong hands & can jump out the gym at a moment’s notice. While his stats don’t pop off the page, Parker is poise for a huge season with his senior signal caller Teddy Bridgewater. I fully expect Parker to show out this season, Louisville will attempt to make a run at a national title & if they end up getting there Parker will have played a big part in it.

Like I said earlier Parker has good size at 6’3 209, he’s physical off the ball & does a great job using his body to shield off defenders on inside routes. Parker caught 40 balls in 2012 for just 744 yards and 10 touchdowns, he clearly has the weakest stats of my top 5 but by the end of the season I believe he will have earned this number 3 spot.

2. Amari Cooper – Sophomore – Alabama
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I know a lot of you were wondering where would I slot this kid on my top 5, well he feel in at #2 for several reasons. Amari Cooper posted 1,000 yards as a freshman for the Tide on just 59 catches proving he has the elite speed to take the top off of any defense in a matter of seconds, but what most people don’t see is he’s a pretty good route runner as well. Cooper isn’t an elite route runner like Lee, but he does run good crisp routes & with that speed is always a threat to take it deep.

Bama looks to be in prime position yet again to contend for a national title & Cooper will be a huge part of this year’s run. He will without a doubt be the Tide’s number one receiver & his ability to hit the home run prohibits defenses from stacking the box with their safeties. This is also why I believe T.J Yeldon will have a huge year but that’s a different story for another time; look for Cooper to put up huge numbers in his sophomore campaign as Bama attempts to win yet another national title.

1. Marqise Lee – Junior – USC
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Marqise Lee, junior receiver from USC, could possibly be the best player in the nation & that’s saying something when you look at the crop of talent entering this season. Lee can do it all, his speed takes the top off of any defense smoother than a convertible Porsche & he’s developed the ability to be productive underneath doing the dirty work between the hashes. The only flaw in Marqise Lee’s game is the guy throwing him the football.

Max Wittek looks like he’s going to win the job & start under center for the Trojans; he’s a guy I’m not big on at all. Add that to losing Robert Woods a guy I feel was a perfect complement to Lee & we may be looking at drop in production in 2013. I wouldn’t be surprised if his stats fall of a bit but he’s a still an elite talent. Lee caught 118 balls in 2012 for 1,721 & 14 touchdowns, defenses will roll coverage his way this year & without Robert Woods on the other side to take the pressure off it may be a rough year for Lee.

Even with subpar quarterback play, I still see Marqis Lee showing up on the Sports center top 10 religiously in 2013. Lee’s ability to take the top off of the defense should assist Wittek in 2013; I will say that if the light goes off for that youngster he has an elite target to have a coming out party with. I have no doubt that Lee is entering the draft after this season barring injury I’d be shocked otherwise. With that being said he’s defiantly a top 10 pick in my eyes & of college football’s elite players.

This year will be a good year for wide outs with the quarterback class looking as well as it does, it was tough putting this list together because guys like Odell Beckham, Mike Davis, Jordan Matthews, and Phillip Dorsett & Dorial Green-Beckham all belong in the conversation. Without a doubt the field is stacked when it comes to receivers this year, I fully expect all of these guys to give us jaw dropping highlights on a weekly basis & someone on this list may even make it to New York as a Heisman finalist.

Director of Content for NCAA Football/Broadcaster

Follow Corey Carmona on Twitter @SportsJunkyy

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