Start vs. Sit: Players to Start, Player to Bench Week 12

Start vs. Sit: Players to Start, Player to Bench Week 12

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

This is the final weekend before Thanksgiving weekend. Usually, in the world of college football, that's a huge weekend with big games on Friday and usually a good game or two on Thanksgiving night, though the NFL has usurped that spot a bit. This year, it's going to be very different. Not just because some conferences still have weeks of games left. Games are getting postponed, or cancelled, left and right. As I sit down to write this multiple contests have already been moved from this weekend, if not outright eliminated from the schedule. It's been a strange year to be writing a start vs. sit article. I know sometimes my picks end up fruitless because the schedule changes. On the other hand some of my picks end up working out just fine for fantasy purposes. The world is chaos, but start vs. sit remains vigilant in Week 12.

AAC

START

Calvin Austin, WR, Memphis vs. Stephen F. Austin

Kudos to the Lumberjacks for putting together effectively a full season at the FCS level, as this is their 10th game of the season. Of course, it's not likely to go great playing on the road against Memphis. The Tigers lost weapons to the draft, and Damonte Coxie to injury, but Austin has more than stepped up. He's been over 100 yards in each of his last four games and he's also reeled in seven touchdowns on the campaign.

SIT

Dillon Gabriel, QB, UCF vs. Cincinnati

Heresy, you say?

This is the final weekend before Thanksgiving weekend. Usually, in the world of college football, that's a huge weekend with big games on Friday and usually a good game or two on Thanksgiving night, though the NFL has usurped that spot a bit. This year, it's going to be very different. Not just because some conferences still have weeks of games left. Games are getting postponed, or cancelled, left and right. As I sit down to write this multiple contests have already been moved from this weekend, if not outright eliminated from the schedule. It's been a strange year to be writing a start vs. sit article. I know sometimes my picks end up fruitless because the schedule changes. On the other hand some of my picks end up working out just fine for fantasy purposes. The world is chaos, but start vs. sit remains vigilant in Week 12.

AAC

START

Calvin Austin, WR, Memphis vs. Stephen F. Austin

Kudos to the Lumberjacks for putting together effectively a full season at the FCS level, as this is their 10th game of the season. Of course, it's not likely to go great playing on the road against Memphis. The Tigers lost weapons to the draft, and Damonte Coxie to injury, but Austin has more than stepped up. He's been over 100 yards in each of his last four games and he's also reeled in seven touchdowns on the campaign.

SIT

Dillon Gabriel, QB, UCF vs. Cincinnati

Heresy, you say? Gabriel has tallied 23 passing touchdowns against two interceptions on the season, you say? That is very true and incredibly impressive, but Gabriel – as talented as he is – has been feasting on the many creampuff defenses of the American. Cincinnati is not one of those defenses. The Bearcats have playoff hopes and they aren't messing around. Cincinnati has allowed 11.2 points and 292.2 yards per game to FBS team. If Gabriel is ever going to have a slip up, it's going to be this week.

AAC

START

Mataeo Durant, RB, Duke vs. Wake Forest

Wake Forest scored 53 points against North Carolina last week, which is quite good. It also allowed 59 points to the Tar Heels, which is quite bad. The Demon Deacons have given up 182 yards per game on the ground. Durant has six rushing touchdowns on 82 carries after having only one on 97 carries last year. On the other hand, he's averaged 7.2 yards per carry and has rushed for over 100 yards in three of his last four games. That works for me.

SIT

Khalil Herbert, RB, Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh

Herbert is dealing with a hamstring issue, and that limited him to eight carries against Miami last week. While the talk is Herbert should be fine for this week, I have some skepticism. Even if he's perfectly healthy, this is a rough road matchup for any running back. The Panthers have allowed a mere 78.8 rushing yards per game.

BIG 12

START

Brennan Eagles, WR, Texas at Kansas

Yes, it's a Big 12 team getting to face Kansas. That's never a bad idea. Eagles only has 19 catches on the season, but they've got for 286 yards and five touchdowns. Plus, lead receiver for the Longhorns Joshua Moore (who himself only has 22 catches, to be fair), is questionable with an injury. If Moore can't go, Eagles has even more upside. And, of course, Kansas is involved.

SIT

Spencer Rattler, QB, Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State

Rattler, the promising redshirt freshman, has certainly had his highlight-reel moments. He also has thrown six picks across seven starts, including three against Kansas State. I'm not trusting him in his first Bedlam experience. Yes, he looked largely sharp against Texas, but the Longhorns have nothing on the Cowboys defensively. Oklahoma State has given up only 169.3 passing yards per contest.

BIG TEN

START

Tyler Goodson, RB, Iowa at Penn State

I don't know if Penn State is going to give up on the season. I do know the Nittany Lions are 0-4 with nothing left to play for, and they've allowed at least 30 points in every single game. The Hawkeyes are getting by entirely on the run game offensively thus far. Goodson has led the pack, as he's carried the ball 63 times for 375 yards and five touchdowns.

SIT

Stevie Scott, RB, Indiana at Ohio State

The Hoosiers have been a fun story, but I think the fun ends here. Yes, Indiana is undefeated, but with the data points we have now a lineup of Penn State, Rutgers, Michigan, and Michigan State is not that daunting. Scott rushed for 10 touchdowns last season, and he has five this year. However, the junior has only averaged 3.6 yards per carry, and that's a concern on the road against the Buckeyes.

CONFERENCE USA

START

Mike Collins, QB, Rice at North Texas

These are two teams that have had issues getting on the field, so if this game doesn't happen I sadly will not be surprised. If it does, though, North Texas has allowed 44.2 points and 549.4 yards per game defensively. In the two starts that Collins has been able to make he's thrown for eight touchdowns versus one interception. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

SIT

D'Vonte Price, RB, FIU at Western Kentucky

This was tricky, given Conference USA's postponements and the fact two teams are playing non-conference opponents. Western Kentucky has the best defense of any of the Conference USA teams facing other Conference USA teams. Price is the one good player on Florida International's offense. Ergo, if you are going to sit anybody in this conference based on matchup, it's Price. Hey, I can't be enthusiastic about all of these picks. Although, I will say that in three of their last four games the Hilltoppers have allowed only 10 points.

MAC

Once again, the MAC is playing all its games on Tuesday and Wednesday, with one matchup (Ohio vs. Miami University) canceled. I haven't been saying much about the MAC, since I can't really make picks here and have it be practically useful. However, let me give you a couple of fun facts. Central Michigan has allowed a mere 294.5 yards per game defensively. On the other hand, Bowling Green gave up a staggering 595.5 yards per contest over its first two games (by the time you've read this, Buffalo has likely torn up the Bowling Green defense). So, there you have it.

MOUNTAIN WEST

START

Andrew Van Buren, RB, Boise State at Hawaii

Van Buren has shown a nose for the end zone this season, with five scores in four games. With George Holani dealing with an injury, there is also the potential for Van Buren to get more carries. Hawaii has allowed 29.3 points per game, which is not bad, but I am still intrigued by this matchup because it has also allowed 251.5 rushing yards per contest.

SIT

Romeo Doubs, WR, Nevada vs. San Diego State

Doubs is off to an incredible start to the season with eight touchdowns in only four games. That's incredible, and he's helped power the Wolf Pack to a 4-0 start, but also that is a truly unsustainable touchdown rate. He has 31 receptions, which means one out of every four of his grabs is ending up in the end zone. This is also by far the toughest matchup he's faced so far. The Aztecs had a little blip against San Jose State, but have still allowed a mere 12.8 points and 152.3 passing yards per game.

PAC-12

START

Deon McIntosh, RB, Washington State at Stanford

Part of me is recommending starting McIntosh out of the sheer novelty of recommending a Washington State running back. Mike Leach is gone, and that has changed the landscape for Cougars backs. McIntosh has rushed for 239 across two games and scored in both of his outings so far. Stanford's defense has been run all over thus far, allowing 223 yards per game on the ground.

SIT

Tayvian Cunningham, WR, Arizona at Washington

Both of these teams have only played one game, so the sample size is quite small. Washington only gave up 85 passing yards to Oregon State last week, which is something, but I don't want to buy into that too much. However, the Huskies were strong defensively last year as well, and Jimmy Lake is still around to help out on that side of the ball. Cunningham came up big with five catches for 110 yards and a touchdown in Arizona's opener but, again, I don't want to buy into one game too much.

SEC

START

Trevon Grimes, WR, Florida at Vanderbilt

Alas, Texas A&M against Ole Miss was postponed, which means we don't get to load up on Aggies in that glorious matchup. Hey, at least Florida's incredible passing game is in line to take the field, and they are playing lowly Vanderbilt to boot. When Kyle Pitts is on the field (he's questionable) you know to start him. The same goes for Kadarius Toney. Don't overlook Grimes, though. This offense can support multiple receivers in one game, and Grimes has 303 yards and five touchdowns himself, even if he is third on the Gators in both categories.

SIT

Zamir White, RB, Georgia vs. Mississippi State

With Georgia on the field, you probably aren't surprised that I am recommending to sit a player in this game. However, you may be surprised that it's a Georgia Bulldog that is in my sights. White and the Georgia running game have been relied upon by the team, but Mississippi State knows that and it can try and make Stetson Bennett, or D'Wan Mathis or whoever is under center, beat them. Also, Mississippi State's offensive woes have maybe overshadowed its defensive prowess. The Bulldogs from Starksville have only allowed 127.2 rushing yards per game.

SUN BELT

START

Marcell Barbee, WR, Texas State vs. Arkansas State

There have been multiple quarterbacks under center for the Bobcats, but Barbee has excelled regardless. He has 32 catches for 464 yards and a whopping nine touchdowns, and the junior has a four-game touchdown streak. That streak could easily continue this week, as Arkansas State has allowed 40.3 points per game to FBS teams.

SIT

Wesley Kennedy, RB, Georgia Southern at Army

With these two offenses taking the field, this game will probably be over swiftly. J.D. King, Georgia Southern's lead rusher, is out for the season now, leaving Kennedy as the new lead back. This may not be an easy matchup to step into, though. Yes, Army allowed 38 points to Tulane last week, but Army has still only given up 15 points and 112 rushing yards per game.

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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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