BIGGEST SURPRISE Northern Illinois
The Huskies have ridden tailback Michael (the Burner) Turner to
a No. 12 ranking while knocking off three BCS teams.
BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT N.C. State
How to spoil Philip Rivers's Heisman campaign: Stumble to a 4-3
start, with losses to Wake Forest and Georgia Tech.
BEST PERFORMANCE Rashaun Woods, WR, Oklahoma State
In a Sept. 20 rout of SMU, Woods caught 13 passes for 232 yards
and an NCAA record seven TDs.
COMEBACKER PLAYER Jeff Smoker, QB, Michigan State
After getting booted off the team last year for a
substance-abuse problem, the 6'3", 224-pound senior has thrown
for 1,818 yards and 12 touchdowns for the 6-1 Spartans.
October 19, 2003
BREAKOUT PLAYER B.J. Symons, QB, Texas Tech
The surprising Symons has led the Red Raiders to a 5-1 record
and set a slew of Big 12 marks.
TOP DEFENDER Darnell Dockett, DT, Florida State
A one-man wrecking crew in the mold of former Seminoles Peter
Boulware, Andre Wadsworth and Corey Simon.
PERSEVERANCE AWARD Julius Jones, RB, Notre Dame
A star in 2001 Jones was kicked off the team before last season
for academic reasons. After taking classes at Arizona State to
stay eligible, he rejoined the Irish and rushed for a Notre
Dame-record 262 yards in Saturday's 20-14 upset of Pitt.
TOP FRESHMAN Chris Leak, QB, Florida
Named the starter on Sept. 22, Leak threw for 229 yards and two
TDs in a 19-7 upset of No. 6 LSU on Saturday.
BEST GAME Miami 38, Florida 33
On Sept. 6 at the Orange Bowl former Florida QB Brock Berlin
led a furious comeback from a 33-10 third-quarter deficit.
BIGGEST PLAY Kellen Winslow, TE, Miami vs. West Virginia
His sprawling catch on fourth-and-13 in the final minute kept
the last-ditch drive alive in a 22-20 win.