College Football All-Week 2 Team
In Week 2 of the college football season, 22 players outperformed their peers at their respective positions with their outstanding play. These 22 players are members of my All-Week 2 Team.
Remember, only Week 2 performance is considered on this team; Week 1 performances do not count. I might mention Week 1 performances in passing for your learning pleasure, though.
Go ahead and come up with your own team in the comments section below.
Rankings updated through Sept. 9, 2012. Rankings appear as follows: No. AP/No. USA TODAY. All stats collected from sports-reference.com/cfb/.
Quarterback: Collin Klein (No. 15/14 Kansas State)
Week 2 Result: 52-13 W vs. Miami (FL)
Week 2 Stats: 9-of-11 passing, 210 yards, one touchdown; one sack; one interception; 254.0 rating; 22 carries, 71 yards, 3.2 average, three touchdowns
Collin Klein might not have put up the flashiest stat line, but the Kansas State Wildcats quarterback engineered a 52-point effort against Miami (FL). The Hurricanes posed a bigger threat to Klein than the teams the other superstar quarterbacks faced in Week 2.
With his performance this past Saturday, Klein has shown the nation that 2011 was not a fluke season for the Wildcats and that he belongs in the 2012 Heisman Trophy discussion.
Klein’s three rushing touchdowns on the season, which all came in Week 2, are second-best amongst quarterbacks in FBS, according to ESPN. Also, Klein is No. 10 amongst qualified FBS passers with a 173.7 rating.
Klein certainly has not hurt his 2012 Heisman Trophy stock one bit.
Running Back: Damien Williams (No. 5/5 Oklahoma)
Week 2 Result: 69-13 W vs. Florida A&M (FCS)
Week 2 Stats: 10 carries, 156 yards, 15.6 average, four touchdowns
Damien Williams and the Oklahoma Sooners faced FCS opponent Florida A&M in Week 2, but that should not detract from Williams' performance carrying the football at all.
Averaging 15.6 yards per carry with four rushing touchdowns is impressive against any competition.
Dominique Whaley currently has the No. 1 running back spot on the depth chart in Norman, but Williams has been the biggest home run threat in the FBS this season. Williams’ 12.9 yards per carry leads the nation, and his five rushing touchdowns are second-best.
If Williams can keep it up against No. 15/14 Kansas State in Week 3, the Big 12 could be in trouble.
Running Back: Johnathan Franklin (No. 22/23 UCLA)
Week 2 Result: 36-30 W vs. No. 28/24 Nebraska
Week 2 Stats: 26 carries, 217 yards, 8.3 average; three receptions, 59 yards, 19.7 average, one touchdown
Johnathan Franklin has arguably carried the UCLA Bruins to a Top 25 ranking in both polls under new head coach Jim Mora.
I believe Franklin is the front-runner for the 2012 Doak Walker Award after the first two weeks. Franklin ranks No. 18 nationally with 41 carries, No. 1 with 431 rushing yards, No. 3 with 10.5 yards per carry and No. 12 with three rushing touchdowns.
Franklin was just as dangerous catching the ball as he was running it in Week 2 against a Nebraska team that was ranked No. 16/14 at the time.
Franklin looks like another star who will make it big in Hollywood.
Wide Receiver: Tracy Moore (No. 36/27 Oklahoma State)
Week 2 Result: 58-39 L at No. 24/25 Arizona
Week 2 Stats: Eight receptions, 106 yards, 13.3 average, four touchdowns
Oklahoma State Cowboys wideout Tracy Moore found his way onto my All-Week 2 Team because he found the end zone with relative ease.
True freshman quarterback Wes Lunt slung the football around for 436 yards in Week 2, and four Cowboys had at least six receptions.
Moore was the only one with a touchdown, though.
If not for Oklahoma State’s four turnovers and 167 penalty yards, Moore might have had an even more productive game.
Wide Receiver: Alex Neutz (Buffalo)
Week 2 Result: 56-34 W vs. Morgan State (FCS)
Week 2 Stats: Eight receptions, 154 yards, 19.3 average, four touchdowns
Don’t look now, but Buffalo wide receiver Alex Neutz has the most touchdown receptions in the FBS after Week 2 (five).
Four of them came in Week 2 against FCS opponent Morgan State, with the other coming against Georgia in Week 1.
As you can see, I value wide receivers who can score touchdowns more than wide receivers who simply rack up yards in wide-open offenses. Neutz showed in Week 2 he can score just as well as he can rack up yards almost every time he catches the ball.
When considering his 6'4" frame and his production through Week 2, Neutz should stand out in the MAC this season.
Tight End: Chris Coyle (No. 38/31 Arizona State)
Week 2 Result: 45-14 W vs. Illinois
Week 2 Stats: 10 receptions, 131 yards, 13.1 average, two touchdowns
Chris Coyle was Arizona State’s No. 1 weapon in its Week 2 win against Illinois. No other Sun Devil caught more than three passes.
Coyle caught 10.
Coyle is turning into one of the FBS’ best new deep threats at tight end. In Week 1 against FCS opponent Northern Arizona, Coyle had two receptions for 65 yards (32.5 average).
Why do I say new, though?
In 2011, Coyle had just six receptions for 73 yards.
Yes, Coyle nearly doubled his 2011 production in Week 2 alone.
Arizona State was expected to sputter coming out of the gate in 2012 due to a new head coach and many new starters. Thanks to guys like Coyle, that has not happened in Tempe.
Defensive Line: Travis Johnson (San Jose State)
Week 2 Result: 45-13 W vs. California-Davis (FCS)
Week 2 Stats: Eight tackles (seven solo), 6.0 tackles for loss, 4.0 sacks
The San Jose State Spartans followed up a near-victory at No. 21/16 Stanford in Week 1 with a dominant performance against FCS opponent UC-Davis in Week 2.
After a four-sack performance in Week 2, Travis Johnson now sits at No. 2 in the FBS for the category.
What a difference a day makes.
Johnson stood out amongst a suffocating San Jose State defensive unit in Week 2. The Spartans held UC-Davis to 252 yards of total offense and 58 rushing yards on 36 carries (1.6 average). San Jose State also intercepted UC-Davis three times and collected six sacks.
The Spartans, and especially Johnson, brought the pressure in Week 2.
Defensive Line: Trevardo Williams (Connecticut)
Week 2 Result: 10-7 L vs. North Carolina State
Week 2 Stats: Five tackles (two solo), 3.0 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, one forced fumble
Connecticut lost its Week 2 game against North Carolina State, but the result was not due to a lack of production from Trevardo Williams.
Williams helped the Huskies hold the Wolfpack to 258 yards of total offense, as well as only 54 rushing yards on 41 carries (1.3 average). Connecticut also collected six sacks in the game.
In conjunction with a 37-0 blanking of new FBS competitor Massachusetts in Week 1, Connecticut is No. 3 nationally in scoring defense (5.0 points allowed per game). Williams has led that charge in Storrs.
Defensive Line: Damontre Moore (NR/No. 47 Texas A&M)
Week 2 Result: 20-17 L vs. No. 18/17 Florida
Week 2 Stats: 10 tackles (seven solo), 3.0 tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks
Damontre Moore announced to the college football world in Week 2 he can dominate in the SEC.
Moore made his mark in the trenches with 10 tackles and three sacks. That is quite a debut in the SEC for Moore, whose Aggies joined the conference in the offseason.
Defensive Line: Quanterus Smith (Western Kentucky)
Week 2 Result: 35-0 L at No. 1/1 Alabama
Week 2 Stats: Three tackles (three solo), 3.0 tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, one forced fumble
Quanterus Smith found holes in an offensive line that could have three first-round picks in the 2013 NFL draft. Smith does not play in the SEC or even the BCS conferences.
No, Smith plays for Western Kentucky.
The Hilltoppers collected six sacks on the Crimson Tide, and Smith’s three led the way.
For comparison, Alabama allowed only two sacks against Michigan—a much more highly regarded team than Western Kentucky.
While Alabama might have looked ahead to SEC play, Western Kentucky played its biggest game of the season in Week 2. Though the Hilltoppers lost by 35, they might have found a chink in the Crimson Tide’s armor.
Linebacker: Jake Fischer (No. 24/25 Arizona)
Week 2 Result: 59-38 W vs. No. 36/27 Oklahoma State
Week 2 Stats: 14 tackles (10 solo), one forced fumble
Jake Fischer leads all FBS defenders in tackles through Week 2 with 27 total tackles. Fourteen of those 27 came in Arizona’s upset win over Oklahoma State.
Fischer is a star on an otherwise not-so-great Wildcats defense. Some college football teams have guys that get loads of tackles, and Fischer seems to be one of those guys in Tucson this season.
Linebacker: Anthony Hitchens (Iowa)
Week 2 Result: 9-6 L vs. No. 39/40 Iowa State
Week 2 Stats: 19 tackles (six solo), 1.0 tackles for loss
Anthony Hitchens and Iowa held their in-state rivals Iowa State to nine points in Week 2.
Too bad Iowa only scored six points.
Hitchens brought down 19 Cyclones ball-carriers, but his efforts were not enough to get the win for the Hawkeyes.
When a defender accumulates 19 tackles on a defense that allowed only one touchdown in the game, the country better take notice.
Like Jake Fischer at Arizona, Hitchens has 27 tackles through Week 2, which leads the FBS.
Linebacker: Pat Hinkel (Miami (OH))
Week 2 Result: 30-14 W vs. Southern Illinois (FCS)
Week 2 Stats: 11 tackles (three solo), two interceptions, 49 interception return yards, 24.5 average, one interception return touchdown, four passes defended
Pat Hinkel played some mean pass coverage from his linebacker spot in Miami (OH)’s Week 2 win against FCS opponent Southern Illinois.
After getting mauled by Ohio State in Week 1, Hinkel had a more successful day on the gridiron in Week 2 against lower competition. Hinkel did get seven tackles in the Ohio State game, though.
Hinkel was in all the right places for the RedHawks, and that is why he made my All-Week 2 Team.
Linebacker: Jarvis Jones (No. 7/7 Georgia)
Week 2 Result: 41-20 W at Missouri
Week 2 Stats: Nine tackles (six solo), 2.0 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, one interception, 21 interception return yards, 21.0 average, two passes defended, one forced fumble
According to CBS Sports, Jarvis Jones is the No. 10 overall prospect eligible for the 2013 NFL draft (as of Sept. 6).
Jones showed why in Georgia’s Week 2 victory over Missouri.
The Bulldogs had four regular starting defensive players suspended for the Missouri game. Jones stepped up in the absence of his teammates in just about every statistical way possible.
Imagine how lopsided the score might have been if the suspended players were on the field.
Defensive Back: Kenneth Acker (Southern Methodist)
Week 2 Result: 52-0 W vs. Stephen F. Austin (FCS)
Week 2 Stats: Three tackles (three solo), 1.0 tackles for loss, two interceptions, 77 interception return yards, 38.5 average, one interception return touchdown, two passes defended, one fumble recovery touchdown
SMU’s defense bent, but never broke, in its Week 2 win against FCS opponent Stephen F. Austin. The Mustangs allowed 466 yards of total offense but zero points.
Kenneth Acker led an SMU secondary that helped cause six interceptions and a 9-of-22 third-down conversion rate.
Stephen F. Austin also lost four fumbles and was sacked twice.
It remains to be seen whether the Mustangs defense can stop anyone on the FBS level, but in Week 2 against the FCS, Acker and his teammates put up an immovable wall.
Defensive Back: Jared Tevis (No. 24/25 Arizona)
Week 2 Result: 59-38 W vs. No. 36/27 Oklahoma State
Week 2 Stats: Nine tackles (five solo), two interceptions, 32 interception return yards, 16.0 average, three passes defended
Jared Tevis and his teammates in the Arizona secondary did just enough to preserve an upset over Oklahoma State in Week 2.
Tevis grabbed two of the Wildcats’ three interceptions.
Arizona’s defense needs to make improvements before heading into Pac-12 play, but perhaps along with Jake Fischer, Tevis needs to make fewer improvements than the rest.
Defensive Back: Ed Reynolds (No. 21/16 Stanford)
Week 2 Result: 50-13 W vs. Duke
Week 2 Stats: Four tackles (three solo), two interceptions, 121 interception return yards, 60.5 average, one interception return touchdown, two passes defended
Through Week 2, Ed Reynolds is the interception king in the FBS.
Reynolds leads the nation in both interceptions (three) and interception return yards (144).
Will Reynolds have more than 13 interceptions in 2012, which would surpass David Amerson's mark from 2011? I do not know, but I do know Reynolds has put his name in the early 2012 Jim Thorpe Award discussion.
Defensive Back: Demetruce McNeal (Auburn)
Week 2 Result: 28-10 L at No. 30/28 Mississippi State
Week 2 Stats: 18 tackles (six solo), 1.5 tackles for loss
Like Anthony Hitchens at Iowa, Demetruce McNeal almost reached that otherworldly game mark of 20 tackles in Week 2.
McNeal brought down 18 Mississippi State ball-carriers but could not bring down the team, as the Bulldogs handed the Tigers a loss.
While losing an SEC game to a team not named Alabama or LSU hurts Auburn’s chances of getting back to a high ranking like it enjoyed in 2010, at least McNeal can enjoy a moral victory this week.
Kicker: Brett Baer (Louisiana-Lafayette)
Week 2 Result: 37-24 W at Troy
Week 2 Stats: 3-for-3 field goals (25, 25, 32), 4-for-4 extra points, 13 points
Brett Baer does all the kicking duties for Louisiana-Lafayette—placekicking, punting and kickoffs—and he does them all well.
I only accounted for placekicking here, though.
Baer leads all FBS kickers in field goals made (seven), field goals attempted (seven) and field goal percentage (100 percent) in 2012.
Through Week 2, Baer should be the front-runner for the 2012 Lou Groza Award.
Punter: Ryan Epperson (NR/No. 47 Texas A&M)
Week 2 Result: 20-17 L vs. No. 18/17 Florida
Week 2 Stats: Six punts, 299 yards, 49.8 average, two inside 20, one punt return, one punt return yard, 1.0 average, two fair catches
Ryan Epperson took one of Florida’s most dangerous weapons—the return game—out of the picture. The Gators had Phil Steele’s No. 1 special teams unit heading into 2012 (Phil Steele's 2012 College Football Preview).
Only one of his six punts was returned, and that return went for only a single yard.
Epperson’s 49.8 yards per punt ranks No. 3 in the FBS through Week 2.
Kick Returner: Onterio McCalebb (Auburn)
Week 2 Result: 28-10 L at No. 30/28 Mississippi State
Week 2 Stats: Three kick returns, 138 yards, 46.0 average, one touchdown
Onterio McCalebb’s kick return was the only touchdown Auburn scored in its Week 2 loss against Mississippi State.
McCalebb’s 46.0 yards per kick return ranks No. 5 in the FBS through Week 2.
Like Demetruce McNeal, McCalebb was one of the few bright spots for Auburn in Week 2. Luck of the Irish, perhaps?
Punt Returner: Deante' Gray (No. 16/15 Texas Christian)
Week 2 Result: 56-0 W vs. Grambling State (FCS)
Week 2 Stats: Five punt returns, 160 yards, 32.0 average, one touchdown
Grambling State punted to TCU 11 times.
Luckily for Grambling State, only five were returned.
Deante’ Gray was responsible for all five TCU punt returns, one of which he took 70 yards to the house.
Gray’s punt return average (32.0 yards) exceeded Grambling State’s net yards per punt (27.9 yards), and Grambling State even had six more downed punts to make up for the disparity!
Gray probably will not return punts with as much success in the Big 12, but the conference's punters should think twice before sending the ball his way.
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