Big Ten D-linemen fill latest mock drafts

There's little doubt that the first Big Ten player drafted in April will be a defensive lineman.

(Not including Nebraska cornerback Prince Amukamara, who played his entire career in the Big 12.)

Who will hear his name called first? Wisconsin's J.J. Watt? Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan? Illinois' Corey Liuget? Iowa's Adrian Clayborn? Ohio State's Cameron Heyward?

I'll have more on the hopefuls as we get closer to draft night, but colleagues Todd McShay and Mel Kiper are always dissecting the draft and have come out with their latest three-round mock selections.

Here's McShay's mock draft and where the Big Ten players fall:

First round

  • Illinois DT Corey Liuget, No. 14 overall to St. Louis

  • Purdue DE Ryan Kerrigan, No. 16 overall to Jacksonville

  • Wisconsin DE J.J. Watt, No. 17 overall to New England

  • Wisconsin T Gabe Carimi, No. 21 overall to Kansas City

  • Iowa DE Adrian Clayborn, No. 24 overall to New Orleans

  • Ohio State DE Cameron Heyward, No. 32 overall to Green Bay

Second round

Third round

Here's a look at Kiper's mock draft and where the Big Ten prospects fall:

First round

  • Watt, No. 10 overall to Washington

  • Liuget, No. 14 overall to St. Louis

  • Kerrigan, No. 20 overall to Tampa Bay

  • Carimi, No. 23 overall to Philadelphia

  • Clayborn, No. 27 overall to Atlanta

  • Heyward, No. 30 overall to New York Jets

Second round

  • Wilson, No. 34 overall to Buffalo

  • Leshoure, No. 53 overall to Indianapolis

  • Doss, No. 64 overall to Green Bay

Third round

  • Ballard, No. 67 overall to Denver

  • Kendricks, No. 68 overall to Buffalo

  • Moffitt, No. 77 overall to Tennessee

  • Ohio State CB Chimdi Chekwa, No. 81 overall to Oakland

  • Ohio State LB Ross Homan, No. 85 overall to Philadelphia

  • Penn State G Stefen Wisniewski, No. 93 to Chicago

Some interesting stuff here. Both McShay and Kiper think the Colts' Big Ten pipeline will continue, and both also like Buffalo to draft Big Ten players. Kiper includes three players McShay leaves out -- Chekwa, Homan and Wisniewski -- while McShay includes one player (Brewer) who Kiper leaves out. It also stands out how teams like Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Wisconsin have more high-level draft prospects this year than Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State and Nebraska.

Amukamara is the only Nebraska player included in both mock drafts. Both McShay and Kiper have Amukamara going 13th overall to Detroit, where he'll reunite with former Huskers' teammate Ndamukong Suh.