Who are the leading sack masters in the early part of the 2020 college football season? Let’s see who’s off to a hot start harassing QBs.
In this article, I am going to look at some of the nation’s leading sack masters and how they have performed this season. Some are well-known names and some may be breaking out for the first time. Either way, they all have been getting after opposing quarterbacks and making it difficult for them to run their offenses. Let’s take a look at who these elite pass rushers are.
DE, Patrick Jones II, Pittsburgh Panthers
Everyone wondered when Jaylen Twyman opted out of the season, who would fill that void? Pittsburgh has one of the top defensive lines in all of college football. They are loaded with talent. The player that has accepted the challenge of filling that role is senior defensive end Patrick Jones II, from Chesapeake, Virginia. Jones has been everything the Panthers have needed for a pass rusher. He’s been a bit feast or famine, as far as per game totals, but he’s been consistent and persistent at getting pressures. Jones has three games with less than a sack, however, he has two games with three sacks. He currently leads the Nation with seven sacks and at this current pace will shatter his career-best total of 8.5 set last season.
DE, Victor Dimikeje, Duke Blue Devils
Our next sack master on our list is a senior defensive end, Victor Dimukeje. All of the opponent’s attention gets focused on Dimukeje’s teammate – star pass rusher, Chris Rumph II, and rightfully so. However, opposing offenses are going to have to start showing Dimukeje so respect as well. Even though Rumph gets most of the attention, Dimukeje is a very talented pass rusher in his own right. They have similar builds and both aggressively get after the quarterback. He ranks 2nd in the nation, just behind Jones above, with 5.5 sacks. Dimukeje’s personal best season total, was last year when he tallied 8½ sacks. He should easily pass that this year at his current pace.
DE, Durrell Johnson, Liberty, Flames
The third sack master on this list is a junior defensive end, Jurrell Johnson, who comes from Independent School, Liberty. This is Johnson’s first year of getting playing time as he was buried on the depth chart behind star pass rusher Jessie Lemonier, who is now in the NFL. Johnson is currently ranked 3rd in the nation in sacks, with five. He’s had at least one sack in each contest this season, except the opener versus Western Kentucky. I know he’s being playing inferior competition, but that’s what you’re supposed to do when you play those types of opponents. I don’t know a lot about Johnson, but he’s definitely one, that I will watch more closely and intend on watching more of his film.
DE, Will McDonald, Iowa State Cyclones
Our next sack master is the Big-12 Conference’s current sack leader, Will McDonald. The red-shirt sophomore is having himself a great start to the season and is one of the most consistent pass rushers this season. His 4.5 sacks rank him fourth in the nation and he has had at least one sack in all four games played this season. McDonald is a long and speedy defensive end that converted from outside linebacker and has provided the Cyclones with a great pass rushing option. He finished ranked second on the team and 6th in the conference in sacks a season ago, with six. McDonald is another name that I will be watching closely as the season moves forward.
DE, Rashad Weaver, Pittsburgh Panthers
We talked about how good Pittsburgh’s defensive line was, at the beginning of this article. Our last sack master is Rashad Weaver. He might be just as good as Jones. He missed all of last season with an injury suffered in training camp. Back in 2018, he ranked 8th in the ACC with 6.5 sacks. The junior defensive end got off to a great start with 3.5 sacks in his first two games. Since then, he’s recorded one in the last two. Some of that has to do with that the team’s defensive line is so good. I watched him in the season opener versus Syracuse. They had no answer for him – he would tally seven tackles and two sacks.