“Big time players make big time plays in big time games”- Santana Moss
1. Mike Hartline, QB, Kentucky: The senior quarterback of the Wildcats put up career numbers in yards and touchdown passes against #10 South Carolina. He went 32-42 for 349 yards, 4 touchdowns and no interceptions. Hartline made the game winning throw on 4th and 7 from South Carolina’s 24 yard line. There was 1:20 left to play in regulation. The unranked Wildcats overcame an 18 point deficit to stun a South Carolina team that defeated number one ranked Alabama a week prior.
2. Cam Newton, QB, Auburn: Cam Newton made a strong case for the Heisman Trophy on saturday, drawing comparisons to Tim Tebow and Michael Vick with his dominant performance. He went 10-14 for 140 yards and 1 touchdown with his arm, and added 188 yards and 3 touchdowns on 25 carries with his legs. Newton was facing conference rival Arkansas, who came into the contest ranked #12 in the country. He continues to show improvement as a passer, standing balanced in the pocket and throwing with accuracy.
3. Jake Locker, QB, Washington: The Huskies came into the game against #24 Oregon State having lost the last six contests against their conference rival. Jake Locker rose to the occasion, throwing for 286 yards and 5 touchdowns, including a 45 yard touchdown pass and 60 yards rushing. Locker overcame two early fumbles to throw two touchdown passes in overtime.
4. John Clay, RB, Wisconsin: John Clay set a physical tone early against the top ranked Ohio State Buckeyes. He had 88 yards rushing on 14 carries along with two touchdowns by halftime. He finished the matchup with 21 carries, 105 yards, and 2 touchdowns. Clay averaged 5.0 yards per carry and ran through arm tackles with consistency. It was #18 Wisconsin’s first win over a top-ranked team since 1981.
5. Chris Matthews, WR, Kentucky: Matthews was teammate Mike Hartline’s partner in crime against #10 South Carolina, having a career day in catches and yards with 12 for 144 and a score. Matthew used his 6’5 frame to gain position in man coverage and showed good concentration pulling in a handful of catches away from his body. Matthews could improve his draft stock greatly with continued progress in his route running and similiar performances in the weeks to come, facing highly talented Southeastern Conference secondaries.