BCS Rankings 2012: The MVP of Every Top 25 Team
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The Week 12 BCS standings have officially been released, and as expected, Kansas State and Oregon took the top two spots.
It's no surprise that the Wildcats and Ducks are both led by two of the best players in the country, Collin Klein and Marcus Mariota. The two quarterbacks have each put together fantastic seasons in 2012.
Klein and Mariota are clearly the most valuable players on their respective teams, but what about the other Top 25 teams in college football?
Here's a look at the MVP of every team in the current BCS standings.
25. Washington Huskies: TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins
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If you're going to have a conversation about who the best tight end in college football is, then you'd better make sure to include Austin Seferian-Jenkins.
Seferian-Jenkins has been an absolute force in 2012, catching 55 passes for 731 yards and four touchdowns.
The big, athletic, 6'6'', 266-pound sophomore is a physical freak who presents tough matchup problems for any defense he faces.
24. Oklahoma State Cowboys: RB Joseph Randle
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Oklahoma State has been forced to start three different quarterbacks this season due to injuries. However, the offense has still been one of the most potent and productive units in the country, thanks in large part to the play of RB Joseph Randle.
Randle has stepped up and become the Cowboys' new offensive leader this season now that both QB Brandon Weeden and WR Justin Blackmon are gone.
The versatile playmaker is the only Big 12 running back who has topped the 1,000-yard rushing mark at this point in the season. He's also shown that he can be a factor in the passing game as well, as he's caught 22 passes for 172 yards.
23. Texas Tech Red Raiders: QB Seth Doege
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Collin Klein is the Big 12 quarterback that the media has been hyping up the most this season. However, the conference's top passer has actually been Texas Tech's Seth Doege.
Doege has thrown for over 3,300 yards and 34 touchdowns and he's helped lead the Red Raiders to a 7-3 record.
The senior signal-caller is having the best season of his career in 2012, and he deserves more attention than he's gotten so far this season.
22. Rutgers Scarlet Knights: LB Khaseem Greene
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Khaseem Greene flourished in 2011 after making the move from safety to weak side linebacker, earning the Big East's Defensive Player of the Year award for his performance last season.
Greene looks like he's going to take home that trophy yet again in 2012, as he's been the most dominant and disruptive defender in the conference this season.
The 6'1'', 230-pound senior has totaled 96 tackles, including 51 solo stops, and he's also racked up 3.5 sacks, picked off two passes and returned a fumble for a touchdown.
21. Michigan Wolverines: LB Jake Ryan
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Michigan's star quarterback Denard Robinson has not lived up to expectations this season. However, one Wolverine player who has been even better than many were expecting is LB Jake Ryan.
Ryan currently leads the team with 69 tackles, including 12 tackles for loss, and he's also racked up 3.5 sacks and forced two fumbles.
The talented outside 'backer has bloomed into a defensive star in 2012, and he's helped the Michigan defense rank in the top three in the Big Ten in both scoring defense and total defense.
20. Louisiana Tech Bulldogs: WR Quinton Patton
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Louisiana Tech currently ranks No. 1 in the nation in total offense and second in scoring offense, averaging 53 points and 576 yards per game.
The key weapon of the explosive attack has been WR Quinton Patton.
Patton has hauled in 83 passes for 1,086 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2012.
Although he doesn't receive much publicity, the highly productive senior receiver has definitely caught the attention of NFL scouts this season.
19. Louisville Cardinals: QB Teddy Bridgewater
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Although Louisville just lost its first game of the season to Syracuse in Week 11, the Cardinals still have to be considered the favorite to win the Big East championship this season.
That's because they have the league's best offensive playmaker, QB Teddy Bridgewater.
Following an encouraging debut campaign last year, Bridgewater has played even better in 2012. The budding star sophomore has completed 70 percent of his passes for 2,858 yards and thrown 21 touchdowns compared to just five interceptions.
18. USC Trojans: WR Marqise Lee
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Not only is Marqise Lee the best wide receiver in the country right now, but he may also eventually be considered one of the greatest receivers in college football history.
Although USC has not lived up to lofty preseason expectations this year, Lee has still put together a sensational sophomore season. The dynamic and dangerous pass-catcher currently leads the nation with 98 catches for 1,447 yards and he's also hauled in 13 touchdowns.
Lee may not be eligible for the 2013 NFL draft, but if he was, he'd likely be the favorite to be the No. 1 overall pick.
17. UCLA Bruins: QB Brett Hundley
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Jim Mora raised a lot of eyebrows when he chose redshirt freshman Brett Hundley to be his starting quarterback instead of more experienced seniors such as Kevin Prince or Richard Brehaut. However, the choice to start Hundley has ended up being a decision that's worked out extremely well for the first-year head coach.
Hundley has helped revive the struggling program and he's given the team a much-needed leader to rally around.
The highly athletic redshirt freshman has completed 69 percent of his passes for over 2,700 yards, added 272 yards on the ground and accounted for 30 total touchdowns. He's also led UCLA to an 8-2 record, and he has the Bruins in contention to win the Pac-12 South division.
16. Oregon State Beavers: WR Markus Wheaton
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Markus Wheaton is one of the fastest players in college football, and his game-breaking speed has been on full display this season.
Wheaton has been Oregon State's most dangerous and explosive offensive playmaker this season. The senior speedster has caught 61 passes for 878 yards and nine touchdowns.
Now that the Beavers are 7-2 and ranked in the Top 20, Wheaton has started to get the type of national attention that he truly deserves.
15. Texas Longhorns: DE Alex Okafor
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The Texas defense was obviously weakened by the loss of standout defensive end Jackson Jeffcoat. However, the Longhorns were lucky enough to have another star pass-rusher, Alex Okafor, who could step up and help make up for his loss.
Okafor has been Texas's most consistent defensive player this season. He currently leads the team with 8.5 sacks and 11 tackles for loss.
The senior is destined to earn All-Big 12 honors at the end of the season, and he's got the potential to be a Day 2 pick in the 2013 NFL draft.
14. Nebraska Cornhuskers: QB Taylor Martinez
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This season Taylor Martinez has quieted his critics who questioned his passing ability and has proven that he is a true dual-threat quarterback who can beat a defense with both his arm and his legs.
Martinez has completed 62 percent of his passes for over 2,100 yards and he's thrown 19 touchdowns, which is six more than he threw last season. He's also shown that he's still one of the most dangerous running quarterbacks in the country, as he's totaled 770 yards and eight touchdowns on the ground.
The junior signal-caller has led Nebraska to the top of the standings in the Big Ten Legends division. If he keeps playing at this pace, he may lead the Cornhuskers all the way to the Rose Bowl.
13. Stanford Cardinal: RB Stepfan Taylor
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No one would have blamed the Stanford offense for falling apart after losing QB Andrew Luck. However, RB Stepfan Taylor has made sure that hasn't happened this season, as he's stepped up and become the offensive focal point for the Cardinal in 2012.
Taylor has been a workhorse this season, carrying the ball 225 times for 1,061 yards and nine touchdowns, and also catching 28 passes for 184 yards and two touchdowns.
The strong senior rusher may not have many highlight-reel runs, but Taylor has still found a way to get the job done and produce at a high level.
12. Oklahoma Sooners: QB Landry Jones
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Landry Jones came into the 2012 season having thrown for over 12,000 yards in his college career so it's no surprise that he's yet again been one of the most productive passers in the country, averaging 299 passing yards per game.
Jones may not have been able to lead the Sooners to victories over Kansas State or Notre Dame, but he's still helped guide the team to a 7-2 record this season.
The senior signal-caller obviously misses his favorite target from last year, WR Ryan Broyles, but he's been able to overcome the loss and develop a strong bond with his new No. 1 receiver Kenny Stills.
11. Clemson Tigers: QB Tajh Boyd
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Clemson fell off the national radar following a loss to Florida State back in Week 4. However, the Tigers have regrouped and gone on to win their past six games.
Although Clemson has plenty of flashy offensive playmakers such as RB Andre Ellington and wide receivers DeAndre Hopkins and Sammy Watkins, QB Tajh Boyd is the player who deserves much of the credit for the team's success.
Boyd has been one of the most productive and consistent passers in the country in 2012. He's completed 68 percent of his passes for 2,941 yards and thrown 28 touchdown passes, and he's really matured into a true offensive leader.
10. Florida State Seminoles: QB EJ Manuel
During the offseason, many Florida State fans wondered what to expect from QB EJ Manuel, who had an inconsistent campaign as a junior in 2011. However, Manuel has really stepped his game up and been one of the most productive quarterbacks in the country this season.
The athletic senior signal-caller has completed 68 percent of his passes for 2,641 yards, thrown 19 touchdowns and tossed just five interceptions.
If Manuel keeps playing as well and ultimately leads Florida State to an ACC championship and a BCS bowl berth, there's a chance that he could end up being the first quarterback taken in the 2013 NFL draft.
9. South Carolina Gamecocks: DE Jadeveon Clowney
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South Carolina has one of the most dominant defensive lines in the country this season, and the leader of that group is DE Jadeveon Clowney.
The former No. 1-ranked prospect of the 2011 recruiting class has lived up to his high school hype and developed into a truly elite edge-rusher this season.
Clowney has basically been unblockable in 2012, and he's totaled 9.5 sacks and 42 tackles, including 17 tackles for loss.
8. Texas A&M Aggies: QB Johnny Manziel
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Johnny Manziel has been the most impressive and exciting freshman in college football this season.
The explosive dual-threat signal-caller has taken the sport by storm in 2012. He's totaled over 3,800 yards of offense, accounted for 33 touchdowns and led the Aggies to an 8-2 record.
Manziel had a Heisman-caliber performance when it counted the most this past Saturday when he led Texas A&M to a huge upset victory over then No. 1-ranked Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
Johnny Football has now led the Aggies to a Top 10 ranking, and he may end up leading them all the way to a BCS bowl game.
7. LSU Tigers: LB Kevin Minter
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Before the season started, the three LSU defenders that everyone was talking about were defensive ends Barkevious Mingo and Sam Montgomery and safety Eric Reid. However, it's actually been middle linebacker Kevin Minter who's turned out to be the unit's most valuable player this year.
Minter leads the Tigers with 90 tackles, including 11.5 tackles for loss, and he's also notched three sacks, forced a fumble, picked off a pass and broken up another five throws.
The 6'2'', 245-pound junior has been a rock in the middle of an LSU defense that currently ranks third in the country in total defense.
6. Florida Gators: RB Mike Gillislee
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Florida doesn't have many high-profile stars on this year's team. However, the Gators are still loaded with plenty of talent, which is why they've been able to compile a 9-1 record and earn a Top 10 ranking.
One of the keys to the team's success has been its powerful ground game. The player that's made the rushing attack so good is RB Mike Gillislee.
Gillislee has helped ease the loss of last year's two leading rushers, Chris Rainey and Jeff Demps, as he's stepped into the starting role and piled up 842 yards on the ground and scored eight touchdowns.
5. Georgia Bulldogs: QB Aaron Murray
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Everyone called Georgia a fraud after the Bulldogs got rocked by South Carolina 35-7 back in Week 6. However, the team managed to regroup, win its past four games and capture the SEC East division title for the second year in a row.
QB Aaron Murray has once again been the leader who's guided the Bulldogs back to the SEC championship game.
Murray has completed 65 percent of his passes for 2,656 yards and thrown 24 touchdowns and just seven interceptions. His 170 passer rating is the third highest in the country.
4. Alabama Crimson Tide: LB C.J. Mosley
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Alabama lost many of its key veteran leaders from last year's dominant defense, including Mark Barron, Dont'a Hightower, Courtney Upshaw and Dre Kirkpatrick. The Tide needed a new defensive leader to step up this season, and LB C.J. Mosley has done just that.
Mosley currently leads the team with 83 tackles, including 51 solo stops, and he's also racked up four sacks and picked off two passes. He's been the linchpin of a defense that currently ranks No. 1 in the nation in scoring defense and No. 2 in total defense.
The junior inside 'backer clearly has the potential to be Alabama's next first-round NFL draft pick.
3. Notre Dame Fighting Irish: LB Manti Te’o
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Manti Te'o could have left Notre Dame after his junior season and been a first-round pick in the 2012 NFL draft. But instead, Te'o showed his loyalty to the Irish by choosing to return for his senior year and handle some unfinished business.
It's proven to be a wise decision for Te'o, as he's emerged as the top impact defensive player in the country this season. The intimidating inside linebacker has racked up 92 tackles and he's also picked off six passes.
Te'o is the face of an outstanding defense, which currently ranks in the Top 10 nationally in both total defense and scoring defense.
2. Oregon Ducks: QB Marcus Mariota
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Marcus Mariota may only be just a redshirt freshman, but he's displayed the poise and the leadership ability of a seasoned veteran during his first year as Oregon's starting quarterback.
Mariota has been the catalyst for the Ducks' tremendous offensive attack. He's helped the unit average 54 points and 562 yards per game. Most importantly, though, is that he's led the team to a 10-0 start.
The freshman signal-caller has completed 71 percent of his passes for 2,164 yards and thrown 28 touchdowns compared to just five interceptions. He also currently has a 176 passer rating, which is the highest in the country.
1. Kansas State Wildcats: QB Collin Klein
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Collin Klein took over the title of Heisman favorite after a superb performance in a 55-14 win over West Virginia back in Week 8. But that certainly wasn't the only great game that Klein has had this season.
The beastly dual-threat quarterback has thrown for over 2,000 yards and 12 touchdowns and run for 748 yards and 19 touchdowns, and he's been one of the top overall playmakers in the country.
"Optimus Klein" has put the Kansas State offense on his back, and he's helped lead the 10-0 Wildcats into contention for a berth in the BCS national championship game.