2016 NFL Draft: Heart of Dallas Bowl Scouting Preview: Washington vs. Southern Miss


In a game against a young, 6-6 Washington team, Southern Miss will look to put an exclamation point on a rebound season. Southern Miss sits at 9-4 and is part of postseason play yet again after a three-year hiatus.

By: Will Paruta

Chris Peterson’s Huskies are in need of all the experience they can get. On the other hand, Southern Miss is moving the program in the right direction once again. The departure of coach Larry Fedora set the program back a bit, but coach Todd Monken has the Golden Eagles humming. Led by a core group of seniors, Washington heads into battle against a Southern Mississippi squad looking for a milestone victory. Below, see which players will factor into this game’s end result.


Travis Feeney, LB, #41
Feeney, a former safety, has proven to be a leader for Washington’s defense. His closing speed is sensational. Feeney plays with reckless abandon, levying big hits all over the field. He is intelligent and quick to recognize run vs. pass. If Feeney is to avoid a switch to safety and continue playing linebacker in the NFL, he’ll need to add some bulk. Feeney’s tendency for big hits also comes with a tendency to lunge at ball carriers. Regardless, Feeney is most likely locked into a firm day two selection.

Taniela Tupou, DT, #90
This tenacious team captain is a winner of multiple Washington team awards. Tupou won the Guy Flaherty Award, given to the team’s most inspirational player, as well as the Iron Husky Award, given to the team’s best weight room warrior. Tupou has made his bread and butter as a run stopper but, interestingly, has even appeared at fullback for the Huskies. Tupou has been a force inside for Washington’s defense as they rely on him to set the tone up front. Tupou could potentially be the next Husky defensive lineman to make the leap to the NFL.

Jaydon Mickens, WR, #4
Don’t let Mickens’ size fool you. He can play. The senior wide out uses a nice combination of agility and quickness to win on short to intermediate routes from the slot. Mickens does not possess elite speed but will make defenders miss. Although his size seemingly puts a cap on his potential, Mickens has been productive throughout his time at Washington. If Mickens hopes to carve out a niche at the next level, he’ll need to show his worth through special teams.

Joshua Perkins, TE, #82
After beginning his collegiate career at LSU, Perkins made the most of his time at as a Husky. He currently ranks number 6 in Washington team history for both receptions by a tight end as well as receiving yards by a tight end. Perkins is an athletic tight end with soft hands. He models himself after former Husky tight end and second-round pick Austin Safarian-Jenkins. Although Perkins doesn’t quite have the size and speed Safarian-Jenkins displayed, Perkins will be an x-factor in this game against Southern Miss.

Southern Miss

Kalan Reed, CB, #11
They say speed kills. Well, you don’t have to share that with Southern Miss cornerback Kalan Reed. Reed is a burner. He relies on his athletic ability and his pure speed to lock down wide receivers on the outside. Reed is not only fast, but intelligent as well. He was named to the Conference USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll in both 2012 and 2013. Reed is a guy to watch on the back end for Southern Miss as they take on a Washington squad with a lot of speed itself.

Rashod Hill, LT, #73
The 6’6”, 309-pound Hill looks like a prototypical offensive tackle. After only one year of high school football, Hill had a limited amount of offers from colleges across the country. Recently though, Hill has stepped into his own on the gridiron. He is an anchor on the Southern Miss offensive line. Proving his ability to protect the quarterback, Hill has only given up 3 sacks all season. Although he is still somewhat raw, Hill may have an opportunity to earn a roster spot going into camp with an NFL team.

Mike Thomas, WR, #88
This senior wide receiver had an absolute monster year for his Southern Mississippi squad. After finishing with well over a thousand receiving yards and 12 touchdowns, Thomas has placed himself on the map. Thomas caught everyone’s attention with an incredible one handed grab in a game against Louisiana Tech. His ability to stretch the field has helped him to rack up yards. Thomas could sneak into the later parts of the NFL Draft.

Arrow to top