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Seven-Step Drop: LSU QB Joe Burrow Captains 2019 All-Overachiever Team, Laviska Shenault Jr. Headlines All-Underachievers

Seven-Step Drop: LSU QB Joe Burrow Captains 2019 All-Overachiever Team, Laviska Shenault Jr. Headlines All-Underachievers

Seven-Step Drop: LSU QB Joe Burrow Captains 2019 All-Overachiever Team, Laviska Shenault Jr. Headlines All-Underachievers

Hard as it is to hear or rationalize, we're past the midway mark of the college football season right now. Following a wild Week 8 on the calendar that helped whittle down the field of undefeated teams even more, it's as good a time as ever to take stock of what has happened in the sport so far. Thanks to a very large sample size of games, we certainly have enough information on teams, players and coaches now to figure out some of the biggest under (and over) achievers in college football in 2019 relative to early expectations.

So we decided to take a look at Athlon Sports' preseason All-America teams (along with Sports Illustrated, ESPN, The Athletic and others) and the initial AP top 25. With a slew of midseason All-America teams released in recent days, it's time to compare and contrast to find out just who makes up the All-Underachiever team — the one squad you won't find press releases on — and who was flying under the radar in August but is now a household name in mid-October.

All-Underachiever Team

QB — D'Eriq King, Houston

The dynamic signal-caller was touted as a potential Heisman dark horse given how many touchdowns he put up the year prior and the fact that his Cougars were well-positioned to make a move in the AAC under a new coaching staff. Nothing of the sort has happened in Houston as the team is mired in mediocrity and King has chosen to redshirt in 2019 for non-medical reasons.

RB — Joshua Kelley, UCLA

A great story for the Bruins in Chip Kelly's first season, the former walk-on tailback has been largely unheard of this year due in part to injuries. He topped the 120-yard mark six times in 2018 but has only managed to do the same twice in '19 as UCLA has taken a step back on the field.

WR — Laviska Shenault Jr., Colorado

Injuries have once again plagued the Buffaloes star, who entered this year's campaign looking like a possible top-10 pick who was finally healthy. He's crossed the 100-yard receiving mark just once in 2019 while being well off his numbers from last year and generally not having the kind of impact you would expect when tuning into CU games.

OL — Ben Bredeson, Michigan

Offensive line play is typically hard to judge but there's little question that most of the Wolverines in the trenches have underperformed relative to preseason expectations. Bredeson earned plenty of praise in August but Michigan has given up a lot pressure up the middle and struggled to run the ball effectively behind him at the same time.

DL — Reggie Walker, Kansas State

An early-season ankle injury put him behind the eight-ball and the All-Big 12 pick has seemingly never recovered. The senior is no longer a mainstay up front and has managed just half a tackle for loss and zero sacks on the year.

LB — Dylan Moses, Alabama

It was somewhat difficult to find a big-name linebacker who really underachieved relative to preseason expectations this year but Moses being lost to a knee injury in August at least qualifies as the most disappointing player we haven't seen after being named to pretty much every first-team All-American squad coming into the year. The Tide have filled in for him as best as they can but they lost a terrific playmaker and perhaps the best at his position prior to the injury.

DB — Paulson Adebo, Stanford

After a terrific 2018, he was primed to become the Cardinal's topflight lockdown corner and head off to the NFL as a first-round pick. Things have not turned out that way when games got underway this year however as he's been picked on by opponents and given up his fair share of big plays that have far outweighed his ability to pick off a pass.

Coach — Chris Petersen, Washington

Petersen was ranked No. 3 in Athlon Sports' annual ranking of all 130 head coaches — just behind Dabo Swinney and Nick Saban. This year at least, he's nowhere near that kind of lofty company. The Huskies offense, his specialty, is uncreative and bland despite having a strong-armed quarterback in Jacob Eason and the No. 13 team in the AP preseason poll has all but been eliminated from their Pac-12 division race two weeks before Halloween.

Team 1: Washington State

Gardner Minshew, where art thou? Generally considered a top 25 team before the season, the Cougars are lucky to be above .500 on the year and just notched their first conference victory after nearly winning the Pac-12 North in 2018. Their defensive coordinator resigned before October and the team blew a huge lead in the second half to lowly UCLA to boot. Mike Leach has worked wonders on the Palouse but he's really unhappy with this year's bunch.