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October 17, 2010
He never took over the quarterback job with the Gators, but he's taking over for Tebow in other ways. Now at Auburn, Newton is the new superstar quarterback in the SEC, putting up eye-popping rushing numbers and placing himself in the Heisman race.
Newton continued his outstanding season Saturday by rushing for 188 yards and three scores and throwing for another 140 yards and a score in a 65-43 victory over visiting Arkansas to earn Rivals.com National Player of the Week honors.
"[Newton] is one spectacular football player, and I am not one to go out on a limb but everybody in the world sees it," Auburn coach Gene Chizik said. "It's not like I'm telling anybody anything new."
The SEC doesn't look quite so defense-centric in Newton's games. The game against Arkansas was the highest-scoring regulation SEC game in history. Last week against Kentucky, Newton rushed for 198 yards and four touchdowns.
A year after an Alabama running back won the Heisman, an Auburn quarterback is leading the league in rushing. If Newton can put up similar numbers next week against LSU and in the finale against Alabama, Auburn could be headed to a historic season.
"I haven't seen everybody [in the country], but he has to be playing as good as the best ones," Chizik said.
In the years since Marshall Faulk left San Diego State, the Aztecs have been known for losing and, for the most part, an inability to run the ball.
Hillman is erasing both problems. Hillman rushed for 191 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-25 victory over Air Force, the Aztecs' first win over a ranked team since 1996.
With 785 yards in six games, Hillman already has San Diego State's best rushing numbers since 2005. He could become the Aztecs' first 1,000-yard rusher since 2003 and only the sixth since Faulk's final season in 1993.
Texas held Nebraska to 125 rushing yards and 77 passing yards in a 20-13 victory in Lincoln on Saturday to earn Muschamp national coordinator of the week honors. Muschamp's defense did what no one else has been able to do this season: disrupt Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez.
Nebraska coaches pulled Martinez in the third quarter, when he was 4-of 12 passing for 63 yards and had rushed for only 21 yards. Backup Zac Lee fared no better, with only 39 yards of total offense.
With the win, Texas moved to fourth in the nation in total defense.
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