Top Ole Miss and Penn State Players Not Playing in the Peach Bowl

    The Ole Miss Rebels and Penn State Nittany Lions will compete in the Peach Bowl. Find out which players will not be participating in the bowl game.

    The Ole Miss Rebels and Penn State Nittany Lions face off in the Peach Bowl in what could be one of the top games of bowl season. Both teams finished the 2023 season 10-2, and the Peach Bowl pits the No. 10 ranked team nationally in Penn State against the team ranked No. 11.

    However, several players will be missing for both teams due to opts-outs, the NFL Draft, and the transfer portal.

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    Top Ole Miss and Penn State Players Not Playing in the Peach Bowl

    Using the College Football Network Bowl Game Opt-Out Tracker, numerous players will not feature in the Peach Bowl for either Ole Miss or Penn State.

    The Peach Bowl is scheduled for Dec. 30 at noon ET. The event will be held at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, home of the Atlanta Falcons.

    Ole Miss Players To Miss the Peach Bowl

    There is a long list of names who have entered the transfer portal for Ole Miss, but they will most likely have a full arsenal of starters to face Penn State in the Peach Bowl.

    The biggest absence will be defensive end Cedric Johnson, who has declared for the 2024 NFL Draft. Johnson registered 5.5 sacks in 2023, 40 tackles and one forced fumble. Over his four-year career, Johnson put up 19 sacks. The disruptive pass rusher is a big loss for the Rebels’ defensive front.

    MORE: 2024 Transfer Portal Team Rankings

    Ole Miss will also be without their backup QB Spencer Sanders, who has been deemed ineligible to play in the Peach Bowl. 247Sports reported that Sanders is ineligible due to academic reasons. That signals the end of Sanders’ college career, and he is now likely to attempt a career in the NFL.

    If something had happened to starter Jaxson Dart, Sanders would have been the one to see the field. However, Walker Howard will likely step up as backup in Sanders’ absence.

    Ole Miss Players Expected to Miss the Peach Bowl

    • Cedric Melton, OT (transfer portal)
    • Reginald Hughes, EDGE (transfer portal)
    • Demarko Williams, S (transfer portal)
    • Isheem Young, DB (transfer portal)
    • Caden Costa, K (transfer portal)
    • Rayf Vinson, S (transfer portal)
    • Kyirin Heath, TE (transfer portal)
    • Jayvontay Conner, TE (transfer portal)
    • Bralon Brown, WR (transfer portal)
    • JJ Henry, WR (transfer portal)
    • Jeremiah Dillon, WR (transfer portal)
    • Cedrick Nicely, OT (transfer portal)
    • Spencer Sanders, QB (ineligible)
    • Cedric Johnson, DL (NFL Draft)

    Penn State Players To Miss the Peach Bowl

    Despite having a selection of players already declared for the NFL Draft, it looked like Penn State had retained the services of many of its top players for the Peach Bowl. However, ESPN’s Jordan Reid reported pre-game that Olu Fashnu, Kalen King, and Johnny Dixon would not be playing.

    Fashanu is projected as a top-10 pick in the NFL Draft has opted out after he had originally intended to play in the Peach Bowl, which would be his last appearance in college football.

    TEs Theo Johnson and Tyler Warren, LB Curtis Jacobs, DT Devon Ellies, iOL Hunter Nourzad, and DE Adisa Isaac have also opted to play despite them moving on.

    MORE: Top Ten Transfer Portal Departures From the Big Ten

    On the other hand, Chop Robinson has opted out and is the most significant player to be missing for the Nittany Lions. ESPN reported on Dec. 5 that Robinson had declared for the NFL Draft and was skipping the Peach Bowl.

    Robinson had four sacks in 2024, along with 15 tackles. The freaky athletic pass rusher could be one of the first edge rushers taken in the 2024 NFL Draft, and he has decided it isn’t worth the risk and will not participate in the Peach Bowl.

    Penn State Players Expected to Miss the Peach Bowl

    • Jace Tutty, CB (transfer portal)
    • Alex Bacchetta, P (transfer portal)
    • Christian Driver, S (transfer portal)
    • Chop Robinson, DL (NFL Draft)
    • Olu Fashanu, OT (opt-out)
    • Kalen King, CB (opt out)
    • Johnny Dixon, CB (opt-out)

    Miss any action from the top college QB Rankings during the 2023 football season? Want to track all the movement with the college football’s transfer portal? College Football Network has you covered with that and more!

    College Football Transfer Portal Tracker

    Never miss a beat with the CFN-exclusive College Football Transfer Portal Tracker, listing the student-athletes entering and exiting the transfer portal.

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