The unknown is what makes college football great. We've spent all offseason talking about the stars of the sport, and while there weren't any major upsets on Saturday, a handful of unknown players stepped into the spotlight and stole the show. Here are four players who made a splash today that are worth paying attention to for the rest of the season:
Ronald Jones II, RB, USC Trojans
USC quarterback Sam Darnold was one of the those players who were hyped up all offseason and came into the year as the preseason Heisman favorite, but Jones was the best player on the field for the Trojans in their 49-31 win over Western Michigan. He ran for 159 yards and three touchdowns on just 18 carries, averaging nearly nine yards per carry.
Jones, who is very elusive and has excellent vision, emerged as USC's lead back after a few games last season and rushed for over 1,000 yards with 12 touchdowns. This year, he's well on his way to topping those numbers.
Drew Lock, QB, Missouri Tigers
Lock led the SEC in passing last season, but flew almost entirely under the radar because of Missouri's lack of on-field success. Well, Lock did his best to steal some headlines on Saturday, tying the SEC record with seven touchdown passes.
He added 521 yards to those seven touchdowns, guiding Mizzou to a 72-43 victory over Missouri State. Obviously, they faced a lesser opponent and defense may be an issue for the Tigers this season, but Lock put up numbers that are worthy of your attention.
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Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina Gamecocks
Like Lock, Samuel is known around the SEC, but announced his presence on the national stage in South Carolina's 35-28 win over NC State. He returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown and reeled in a ridiculous one-handed catch later in the game.
Samuel's final stat line was five catches for 83 yards and three total touchdowns (two receiving, one kickoff return) as he was the biggest impact player for the Gamecocks. South Carolina kept finding creative ways to get their best receiver the ball and he delivered. If the Gamecocks want to compete in the SEC East this year, Samuel's going to have to continue to produce at a high level.
Holton Hill, DB, Texas Longhorns
There weren't many positives to take away from Texas' 51-41 loss to Maryland on Saturday, but Hill's play was one of the lone bright spots. The Houston-native recorded a pick six on the third play of the game, and later picked up a blocked field goal and returned that for a score.
Those were the first two touchdowns of the game for Texas, and they came from a defensive back. However, that wasn't all Hill did. He finished the game with eight tackles, which was the second most for the Longhorns. Hill was all over the field in all phases of the game and made his presence known.Back to the NCAA Newsfeed