College Football Start vs. Sit: Players to Start, Players to Bench for Week 5

College Football Start vs. Sit: Players to Start, Players to Bench for Week 5

This article is part of our Start vs. Sit series.

The time has come for conference play to really get going with gusto. Love lost? There will be none of that! There will also be less cupcake matchups as a result, but plenty of opportunities on the fantasy college football front. As we head into Week 5, and start to get some real data on the 2022 campaign, here are some players to start, and to bench, for your lineups this week. Let's end September and/or start October with a bang!

AAC Starts and Sits

START

Rahjai Harris, RB, East Carolina at South Florida

Harris and Keaton Mitchell were sharing carries evenly, with Mitchell outperforming his counterpart…until last week. Mitchell had five carries for five yards versus Navy, while Harris got 15 carries and rushed for 75 yards. I can't say for sure how the carries will be split versus South Florida, but I can say South Florida has allowed a whopping 272.7 rushing yards per game.

SIT

Tanner Mordecai, QB, SMU at UCF

Mordecai has tallied 12 touchdowns, but he's also had an issue with turnovers. The quarterback has tossed two interceptions in each of his last two games. The Golden Knights are ninth in points allowed for game, and have been better against the pass than the run. UCF is also 27th in defense on the SP+ front. Mordecai's visit to Central Florida could be a tough one.

ACC Starts and Sits

START

Israel Abanikanda, RB, Pittsburgh vs. Georgia Tech

Surely Abanikanda won't rush for

The time has come for conference play to really get going with gusto. Love lost? There will be none of that! There will also be less cupcake matchups as a result, but plenty of opportunities on the fantasy college football front. As we head into Week 5, and start to get some real data on the 2022 campaign, here are some players to start, and to bench, for your lineups this week. Let's end September and/or start October with a bang!

AAC Starts and Sits

START

Rahjai Harris, RB, East Carolina at South Florida

Harris and Keaton Mitchell were sharing carries evenly, with Mitchell outperforming his counterpart…until last week. Mitchell had five carries for five yards versus Navy, while Harris got 15 carries and rushed for 75 yards. I can't say for sure how the carries will be split versus South Florida, but I can say South Florida has allowed a whopping 272.7 rushing yards per game.

SIT

Tanner Mordecai, QB, SMU at UCF

Mordecai has tallied 12 touchdowns, but he's also had an issue with turnovers. The quarterback has tossed two interceptions in each of his last two games. The Golden Knights are ninth in points allowed for game, and have been better against the pass than the run. UCF is also 27th in defense on the SP+ front. Mordecai's visit to Central Florida could be a tough one.

ACC Starts and Sits

START

Israel Abanikanda, RB, Pittsburgh vs. Georgia Tech

Surely Abanikanda won't rush for 177 yards and four touchdowns again, right? Well, maybe he can. The Yellow Jackets just fired Geoff Collins, and now they have to travel to Pitt. Oh, and they also feature a defense that has allowed 239.7 rushing yards per game.

SIT

Will Shipley, RB, Clemson vs. NC State

Guess which of these teams ranks higher defensively in SP+? You probably figured that was a leading question, and indeed the Wolf Pack rank eighth in defensive SP+, besting the Tigers after they were torched by the Demon Deacons. NC State is one of the 20 teams allowing fewer than 100 rushing yards per game (granted, so is Clemson) and thus I worry about Shipley in this one.

Big 12

START

Kendre Miller, RB, TCU vs. Oklahoma

Miller has a touchdown in all three of his games this season. He is also coming off a game where he rushed for 142 yards on 17 carries versus SMU. This was a tough conference to find starting suggestions, to be honest. Mostly, I am wondering if Kansas State exposed something about the Sooners' defense, particularly on the ground. The Wildcats tore up Oklahoma on that front. Maybe Miller will prove that to be anything but a fluke.

SIT

Dominic Richardson, RB, Oklahoma State at Baylor

Richardson's counting stats are limited mostly due to the competition the Cowboys have faced, as he has not been needed much. His 5.0 yards per carry is indicative of a lead back…and also easy competition. Welcome to the real world, Richardson. Baylor is ninth in defensive SP+ and have allowed a mere 77.0 rushing yards per game. This will be Richardson's first time facing a legit defense as a primary back. I don't see it going well.

Big Ten Starts and Sits

START

Taulia Tagovailoa, QB, Maryland vs. Michigan State

Tagovailoa's ribs will hopefully be OK for this one after a tough game in Ann Arbor. Last year, Tua's brother proved himself a legit talent with 3,860 passing yards and 26 touchdowns (admittedly with 11 picks). Last season, the Spartans were last in passing yards allowed per game. Michigan State's defensive numbers are being bolstered by one-fourth of their games coming against Akron so far. Washington and Minnesota stomped them. I think we should get used to that being the case against legitimate offense and viable QBs like Tagovailoa.

SIT

Blake Corum, RB, Michigan at Iowa

Coming off of a 200-yard game, Corum is about to get some whiplash. Iowa ranks first in defensive SP+. The Hawkeyes have allowed a paltry 6.7 points per game and 86.3 rushing yards per contest. Iowa may take all the beauty out of football, but this is a defense that knows how to handle its business.

CONFERENCE USA Starts and Sits

START

Tyrin Smith, WR, UTEP at Charlotte

Smith is coming off a game where he had all of two catches on two targets, but that is heretofore an anomaly. The dude was targeted a staggering 60 times over his first four games, notching 27 catches for 337 yards and two touchdowns. Charlotte has allowed 49.0 points per contest and is 129th in defensive SP+, so unless something has fundamentally changed vis-à-vis Smith's role in this passing game, I expect an abundance of targets once more.

SIT

Bradley Rozner, WR, Rice vs. UAB

Rozner has 278 yards and three touchdowns through four games, but he's now also dealing with Luke McCaffrey cutting into his role. The Blazers have unexpectedly struggled against the run, but they still rank 34th in defensive SP+, and they are also in the top 36 in points and passing yards allowed per game.

MAC Starts and Sits

START

Samson Evans, RB, Eastern Michigan vs. UMass

Evans was the star of Eastern Michigan's Herm Edwards-axing upset of Arizona State, rushing 36 times for 258 yards. He's graduated from being the touchdown vulture he was in 2021 when he had 13 touchdowns on 83 carries. Speaking of scoring, UMass has allowed 41.7 points per game after giving up 44.7 last season.

SIT

Carlos Carriere, WR, Central Michigan at Toledo

Toledo's run defense's numbers are bad, but blame Ohio State for that. The Rockets have allowed 198.3 passing yards per game this year after giving up 204.4 last season. Toledo is also 47th in defensive SP+ in a conference bereft of above-average defenses. Carriere is off to a strong start to the season, but his starting quarterback Daniel Richardson may be unavailable for this game with a shoulder injury.

Mountain West Starts and Sits

START

Nikko Remigio, WR, Fresno State at UConn

In each of his first two games, Remigio had exactly 100 yards. His last game was a rough one, he was held to one catch, though he did rack up return yards. You know what cures what ails a receiver looking for a rebound? The Huskies. UConn has allowed 44.8 points and 296.5 passing yards per game, business as usual for what is routinely one of the worst teams in the FBS.

SIT

Joshua Cobbs, WR, Wyoming vs. San Jose State

Cobbs is the top receiver for the revamped Cowboys passing game, but he's been more solid than spectacular. He's had at least 44 yards in each of his last four outings, but also no more than 77 yards. The Spartans have allowed 15.0 points and 119.5 passing yards per game against FBS opponents, and SP+ seems to believe as well. There, SJSU ranks 53rd defensively.

Pac-12 Starts and Sits

START

Michael Wiley, RB, Arizona vs. Colorado

I think Wiley is ready for more carries. He's averaged 6.0 yards per carry and just had his first game with double-digit touches. When all is said and done, Colorado may be the worst Power Five team. The Buffaloes have implausibly allowed 334.3 rushing yards per game, most in the FBS.

SIT

Tre'Shaun Harrison, WR, Oregon State at Utah

The competition getting tougher is likely to start affecting Harrison, and it may have done so already. He was just held to three catches for 22 yards against USC in a game where his quarterback Chance Nolan threw zero touchdowns and four picks. Utah is 10th in passing yards allowed per contest and 18th in points allowed per game, so this is a bigger step up in competition for the Beavers' offense.

SEC Starts and Sits

START

Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida vs. Eastern Washington

Richardson finally threw a passing touchdown in his last game! Of course, he has 196 yards and five touchdowns on the ground, a reminder of his dual-threat skills. While many SEC teams are facing tough matchups in Week 5, Richardson and the Gators get to face an FCS team. This is a good chance for Richardson to get his passing performance really in a groove.

SIT

Malik Heath, WR, Ole Miss vs. Kentucky

Heath has a touchdown in three of four games this year, but on 13 receptions. He's been the top receiver for Ole Miss, but the quarterback play has been spotty for him. Kentucky is sixth in defensive SP+, and also has allowed a mere 173.7 passing yards per game.

Sun Belt Starts and Sits

START

Chandler Rogers, QB, ULM at Arkansas State

Rogers' numbers aren't great thus far, but he has had to play on the road against Texas and Alabama thus far. When he played Nicholls, admittedly an FCS team, he threw for 253 yards and two touchdowns while rushing 55 times and a score. Arkansas State may be tougher than Nicholls, but only slightly. The Red Wolves have allowed 39.3 points per game after allowing 40.2 last season. They have also given up 336.3 passing yards per contest as well.

SIT

Calvin Hill, RB, Texas State at James Madison

Hill has rushed for 312 yards on 66 carries, but much of that is from a matchup with FIU, perhaps the worst FBS team. He's done well in the past, so Hill is not exactly a fluke, but James Madison's debut as an FBS team has been impressive so far, particularly defensively. In particular, the Dukes have allowed the fewest rushing yards per game in all of the FBS.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Morgan
Chris Morgan is a writer of sports, pop culture, and humor articles, a book author, a podcaster, and a fan of all Detroit sports teams.
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