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High Noon Highlights (10/25): The Mason Rudolph v. Will Grier Matchup Looms Large

NCAA Football: West Virginia at Baylor Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

It’s High Noon.

Marcell Ateman’s Big Season is Being Nationally Recognized

Ateman is joined by fellow Cowboys James Washington and Jalen McCleskey among the group of college football's top receivers. OSU is the only team in the country with at least three players still currently being considered for the Biletnikoff Award.

The Dallas, Texas, native has been in impressive form so far this season, as he has racked up 655 receiving yards on 33 catches. Ateman has also scored four touchdowns, including a 69-yard touchdown on September 16 that gave Oklahoma State a 21-0 lead over Pittsburgh.

Nice.

After coming off last season’s injury, it looks like Marcell Ateman and Mason Rudolph have picked up exactly where they left off. Ateman has proved himself to one of the most dangerous weapons in college football, and we’ll be rooting for him, Washington or McCleskey to come away with the Biletnikoff come season end.

Kristaps Porizgis Credits Marcus Smart for Making Him a Better Player

The 7-foot-3, 20-year-old had racked up 20 points during the first half, and Celtics coach Brad Stevens was searching for any answer to slow him down.

After exhausting several options, Stevens called on Smart for the task. At the time, it seemed like a massive mismatch for Smart, considering he stood 11 inches shorter than the versatile, Latvian big man. Stevens later admitted the assignment was “kinda crazy,” but he also knew that Smart was the feistiest defender on the team and would be up for any challenge.

As it turns out, Smart was the perfect man for the job. The second-year Celtics guard stuck to Porzingis’ hips like glue and was very physical with his lower body. Porzingis had never dealt with that type of defensive counter before; as a result he was limited to six second-half points.

Other teams took notice and began to utilize similar defensive tactics. This has caused Porzingis to change his approach to the game.

“It was something I had never experienced before,” Porzingis recalled Tuesday morning following Knicks shootaround at TD Garden. “[Smart] was getting into my knees, playing hard defense and I wasn’t really ready for it. I think now I’m more prepared for it. I know what’s coming. I know every team is going to try to play physical defense against me, and I just have to make sure I’m ready for that contact.”

I’m an NBA guy, so sharing a Kristaps Porzingis article on an Oklahoma State blog makes me smile. :) Our boy, Marcus Smart, showed a unicorn how a bull dog plays defense.

Check out the rest of the article here.

Headliner: Mason Rudolph vs. Will Grier

As of Monday morning, West Virginia football sports information director Mike Montoro said he has already credentialed eight NFL scouts for Saturday's game, and he expects to receive more requests throughout the week. When you've got an opportunity to see two guys of this caliber on the same field, it makes it worth your while to make the trip to Morgantown. And these two guys make it worth your while.

Will Grier:

The former Florida transfer's numbers through seven games are very impressive: 177-of-267 for 2,467 yards with 26 touchdowns and just five interceptions. This week, Grier ranks first in the country in touchdown passes, first in touchdowns responsible for, fourth in passing yards and fifth in passing efficiency.

Mason Rudolph:

In 2017, Rudolph is putting the finishing touches on one of the most accomplished passing careers in Big 12 history.

Entering Saturday's game, the 6-foot-5-inch, 230-pounder has thrown for more than 11,000 yards with 74 touchdowns and a completion percentage better than 63 percent. This season, he ranks first in the country in passing yards, first in passing yards per game, second in yards per completion, third in passing efficiency and fourth in points responsible for. That breaks down into 161-of-242 for 2,650 yards with 19 touchdowns and just four interceptions.

On paper, this QB match up looks like one for the ages. In reality, Will Grier is coming off a game in which he threw for 375 yards and 5 touchdowns (albeit against BayLLLLLLLor), and Mason Rudolph is coming off one of the most ..... awkward?... games of his career against Texas. Now we all know the Texas defense makes the Baylor defense look like a pee-wee squad, but Will Grier has momentum going into this game. Mason Rudolph and the receivers are starting from 0 mph.

Hopefully Rudolph will get over whatever bug he was fighting on Saturday and show up in Morgantown, WV ready to show off the most explosive offense in the country. Because Will Grier will be ready for him. Regardless the victor, we are in for a show.

Tune in Saturday at 12:00pm CST.

Bonus: This is Puuuuure Gold!

GO POKES!