PLAYERS TO WATCH: Brewer, Mims could produce early highlights

Bears wide receiver Denzel Mims (15) looks for yards after the catch on the West Virginia Mountaineers defense at McLane Stadium.Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports

Bears rolling out potential new stars versus Abilene Christian

Part of our weekly coverage this season will be a midweek heads up on players we think can really stand out on Saturday. This being the first week of the season, it's a little bit more of a guessing game. But based on last season, spring ball and training camp, here are four players we have our eyes on:

PLAYERS TO WATCH

QB CHARLIE BREWER is apparently getting a lot of competition in preseason practice from N.C. State transfer Jalan McClendon. But given how much Brewer matured last season, and the fact that Rhule said the sophomore has stepped up his level of play to keep pace with McClendon, it would be quite a shock if Brewer didn’t play and play well versus Abilene Christian.

WR DENZEL MIMS posted a 1,000-yard season in 2017 with 61 catches for 1,087 yards as he became the Bears’ best play-maker on offense. They need him to be that again and probably even better. We're likely to see a healthy dose of him early versus the Wildcats.

WR JALEN HURD rushed for 1,288 yards as a sophomore running back at Tennessee in 2015. He transferred to Baylor after 2016 and switched positions to WR. We'll be watching to see if his athleticism translates to big-time plays for the Bears on Saturday.

NT IRA LEWIS posted 11.5 tackles for loss last season among his 34 total tackles. But Baylor still had trouble stopping the run. It will be vital for Lewis to be even better as a senior to raise the level of the Bears’ defensive front.

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