Hunting the Heisman: Geno Dethroned
Thanks to his lackluster performance against Kansas State, where threw for just 143 yards and his first two interceptions of the season, there's a new front-runner for the 2012 Heisman Trophy race.
His name rhymes with "dahlin whine" and he was on the other side of West Virginia's 55-14 loss.
1. Collin Klein, QB, Kansas State
Passing: 98-of-139 (70.5 percent), 1,397 yards, 10 TDs, 2 INTs
Rushing: 110 carries, 551 yards (5.0 ypc), 14 TDs
Why: Klein outgained Geno Smith by a total of 236 yards and combined for six more touchdowns than his counterpart. Kansas State completely dominated West Virginia from the second Klein stepped on the field. The Wildcats are now in the national championship hunt with a No. 3 ranking in the BCS and have a favorable schedule to finish the regular season, so the Heisman is Klein's to lose.
2. Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
Passing: 216-of-291 (74.2 percent), 2,414 yards, 26 TDs, 2 INTs
Rushing: 36 carries, 56 yards (1.6 ypc), TD
Why: It's a sad day in Morgantown, but those who reside in it knew it was coming. Smith is 50-of-87 (57.5 percent) for 418 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions in his last two games, where the Mountaineers are 0-2 and have been outscored 104-28. He's still got a chance to get back in the lead, but he needs to put up some explosive numbers in the upcoming weeks to remind voters what he's capable of.
3. A.J. McCarron, QB, Alabama
Passing: 106-of-154 (68.8 percent), 1,476 yards, 16 TDs, 0 INTs
Rushing: 26 carries, -45 yards (-1.7 ypc), 0 TDs
Why: With Smith's two picks Saturday, McCarron and Colby Cameron are the only two FBS starting quarterbacks to have not thrown a pick yet. McCarron currently leads the nation in passer efficiency (183.6) and could really make some noise in this race down the road, as the Tide still face three ranked opponents.
4. Manti Te'o, LB, Notre Dame
Tackles: 69 tackles (27 solo)
Interceptions: 4 (35 yards)
Why: Te'o continues to be the best player on one of the best defensive units in college football. His 10 tackles Saturday marks the fifth time he's done so this year, and his interception ranks him tied for fourth among all FBS defenders with four.
5. Braxton Miller, QB, Ohio State
Passing: 105-of-179 (58.7 percent), 1,384 yards, 11 TDs, 5 INTs
Rushing: 141 carries, 959 yards (6.8 ypc), 10 TDs
Why: Miller went down in the third quarter against Purdue and did not return. He's dropped off in production and will have to put up some big numbers the next few weeks to stay in contention, but an absence versus Penn State — whether it be due to injury or just lack of performance — would likely take him off the list.
Others to watch (in order):
6. Seth Doege, QB, Texas Tech
7. Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon
8. Matt Barkley, QB, USC
9. Colby Cameron, QB, Louisiana Tech
10. E.J. Manuel, QB, Florida State
Follow @Tyler_Waddell on Twitter