1. Steve Slaton RB West Virginia So.
Slaton was magnificent against Maryland two weeks ago. He continues to punish defenders with his speed. It seems he can not be stopped. West Virginia won’t hurt his chances because the Mountaineers are going to have a good record by the end of the season. Louisville and Rutgers look like the only thing between West Virginia and the National Championship game. The only thing that would prevent Slaton from being in New York in early December is an injury. His measure-stick games include: Louisville and Rutgers.
Steve Slaton's yearly totals:
Rushing: 86 attempts; 583 yards; 6.8 average; 6 TDs; 4 receptions; 47 yards 11.8 average
2. Troy Smith QB Ohio State Sr.
Ohio State might have lost to Penn State Saturday had Smith not scrambled and made the play of the game. Smith’s 37-yard pass to Brian Robiskie gave the Buckeyes a commanding 14-3 lead; they went on to win 28-6. Ohio State has another prime-time contest this weekend – this time against Iowa. Smith would do well to have another big day in front of the entire nation. His measure-stick games include: Iowa, Michigan State and Michigan.
Troy Smith's yearly totals:
68 completions; 103 attempts; 884 yards; 66% complete; 8 TDs; 2 INTs
3. Adrian Peterson RB Oklahoma Jr.
This guy continues to pound teams. He is the top running back west of the Mississippi, and a case could be made for his being the top in the country. Peterson plays Texas in a few weeks. A good performance against the defending national champs could cement his Heisman chances. Peterson has four 100-yard games in four contests this season – not bad. His measure-stick games include: Texas, Texas A&M, and Oklahoma State.
Rushing: 117 attempts; 643 yards; 5.5 average; 7 TDs; 4 receptions; 72 yards; 18 average
4. Calvin Johnson WR Georgia Tech Jr.
Georgia Tech’s play calling is going to keep Johnson from New York, but his performance against Virginia was extraordinary. If Tech’s coaches are as smart as their fan base believe, the play callers will get the ball to Johnson early and often. His measure-stick games include: Virginia Tech, Clemson, Miami and Georgia.
Rushing: 1 attempt; 21 yards; 21 average; 0 TD; 19 receptions; 311 yards; 16.4 average; 5 TDs
5. Ted Ginn WR Ohio State Jr.
Ginn is going to have to do a little more to move up my list. He’s a playmaker, but he’s not had that one go-to play that you can point to that has defined his season. Yes, he scored the go-ahead touchdown against Texas, and the Buckeyes never looked back. But Ginn has some difficult competition in front and behind him on my list. His measure-stick games include: Iowa, Michigan State and Michigan.
Rushing: 1 attempt; -6 yards; -6 average; 0 TD; 16 receptions; 268 yards; 16.8 average; 5 TDs
Just outside my top five:
Chris Leak QB Florida Sr. – Needs a signature win in a big game – and not against Tennessee. Beat Auburn and you are in my five.
Brady Quinn QB Notre Dame Sr. – Quinn is the best pocket passer in this group, but the Irish don’t play anyone that excited me enough to move Quinn up my list. In Notre Dame’s three big games so far Quinn has been average, which is not good enough to win the Heisman.
Kenny Irons RB Auburn Sr. – Took a week off last Saturday. Now Irons gets ready for the stretch run in the SEC. Slashing past Florida, Georgia and Alabama will help his chances of going to New York.