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College Football Star Power Index: Hendon Hooker Leads Tennessee Top 10, Jaron Daniels Earns Heisman Reputation

The final Saturday of September was another dramatic weekend filled with wild finishes and unexpected results, with star performances from college football players across the country. Those who shined on the big stage in Week 4 were fleeting stars who couldn’t stay in the spotlight, but there were also some familiar faces and standout Heismans who were contenders for his trophy.

One of the beauties of the sport is its wide range of characters. That ranges from five-star prospects who are rocks picked in the NFL Draft, to previously overlooked prospects and transfers who are making the most of every opportunity they find. That didn’t change last week as various groups of players stole the show with big wins for their teams.

As the season progresses into October, it’s time to see who shines brightest in another edition of the Star Power Index. This is not Heisman his trophy watchlist, or a ranking of potential earnings based on player names, images, and likenesses, nor the NFL’s mock-his draft. There are many places to find them. Here’s a rundown of players maxing out their platform for quality of performance and other reasons to stand out as stars in their sport.

college football star power index

Tennessee quarterback Hendon Hooker

Hooker’s superstar-level play in Tennessee is sure to make Virginia Tech fans scratch their heads. The Hokies have gone 19-18 in the three seasons Hooker has been with and have always had to fend off other players for the job. Even Tennessee’s offensive-minded coach Josh Hupel couldn’t immediately identify Hooker’s talent. Whippel chose to start Joe Milton at quarterback to start the 2021 season.

But since taking over the job at Tennessee following Milton’s injury last season, Hooker has thrown for 38 touchdowns and just three interceptions, while scoring eight more. His stardom reached new levels Saturday in the Volunteers’ 38-33 victory over Florida. Hooker hit 112 yards and his TD, he passed for 349 yards and he scored two touchdowns. With Hooker at the helm, Tennessee reached its highest ranking in the AP Top 25 poll since the 2006 season.

Tyler Van Dyke, Miami quarterback

Van Dyke cracks the Star Power Index because of the shocking reality of Miami’s quarterback controversy just four games into Mario Cristobal’s tenure as coach. Jake Garcia replaced Van Dyke in the third quarter when the Hurricanes scored his 45-31 midfielder loss to Tennessee and led his drive for a quick touchdown, but eventually sobered up. He finished 169 yards with 10 passes for 19 yards. As a redshirt freshman in 2021, Van Dyke was considered one of the top quarterbacks in the country going into the season as he threw for 2,931 yards and he threw for 25 touchdowns in 10 games. Inconspicuous.

So is Van Dyke really the problem here? As Cristobal pointed out, you could point to Miami’s lean receiver room as the problem. Or, as Cristobal also points out, pointing to the scheme change as a problem. But whose fault is it? Cristobal and his staff are the heirs to the 2021 ACC Rookie of the Year. In reality, Van Dyke was derailed by someone who was benched against Conference USA foes under their coaching. It bodes very worryingly for the future of Miami football in just a few months.

Jaron Daniels, Kansas quarterback

When Jaron Daniels signs with Kansas under former coach Les Miles as a member of the Jayhawks’ 2020 recruiting class, it suggests he’ll one day appear in a key spot on the Heisman Trophy odds sheets Daniels is the 61st-ranked dual-threat quarterback in his class, according to 247Sports, and his QB mates in that ranking territory include Cal Poly, Western Oregon, Princeton, We have contracts with schools such as Holy Cross.

But after contributing 89 rushing yards and another score on the ground while throwing for 324 yards and four touchdowns in KU’s 35-27 victory over Duke on Saturday, Daniels certainly did Heisman’s 2018 win. Participated in conversations and placed 9th on the board. Caesar’s Sportsbook with odds of 40 to 1. As the driving force behind his 4-0 start for the Jayhawks, Daniels may be more important to his team than any other player in his college football career. Seriously, he can event punt!

Demani Richardson, Texas A&M Safety

We have to admire Demani Richardson’s improvisational creativity. Demani Richardson gave the Aggies the win in one of his most bizarre heads-up plays this season, with Texas A&M’s 23-21 win over Arkansas. Arkansas quarterback KJ Jefferson on goal He made a bizarre fumble near the line before the Aggies defensive his back He Tyreek ran down the sideline until his chapel appeared with the football and the momentum stopped . Then, just before the play was blown out, Richardson showed up and somehow coaxed the football out of his teammates and ran the rest of the way for an 82-yard touchdown.

The play turned the Aggies momentum and turned Richardson into a superstar heading into Week 5. Defensive is always a must-see highlight when his players score touchdowns, but the nature of Richardson’s scoring and the moment and matchup made him come out on top. Highlights of Saturday’s action.

DJ England – Receiver in Chisholm, Central Tennessee

The 5-foot-7-inch senior receiver from Central Tennessee accounted for 20.8% of his career receiving yards and 25% of his career touchdowns on two plays in the Blue Raiders’ stunning 45-31 upset in Miami. rice field. England Chisholm’s 71-yard touchdown reception from Cunningham with 4:21 left in the first quarter put the Blue Raiders up 17-3. After that, his 98-yarder put his MTSU up to his 38-17.

Admittedly, it was a humiliating defeat for the Hurricanes, but give yourself some leeway. In England when Chisholm was in high school he ran 10.54 seconds in the 100 meters. You’d think an assistant coach, an analyst, an alumnus’ assistant, an intern, or someone on Miami staff would have told the defense. Nonetheless, it was an unforgettable performance from England Chisholm and the entire MTSU team that helped the Blue Raiders beat their ranked opponents for the first time in program history. .

Adrian Martinez, Kansas State Quarterback

After surviving a disastrous four years in Nebraska, where the Cornhuskers lost 0-13 to ranked opponents, Adrian Martinez ran into a long-awaited moment of glory on Saturday . The Kansas State quarterback rushed for 148 yards and his four touchdowns in a big 41-34 win. 6 Oklahoma. To top it off, Martinez also passed him for 234 yards and another score.

Martinez is no NFL prospect and this is his final season in college football. Hopefully, the Wildcats could join his mix for a Big 12 title, but his performance against the Sooners was the last epic act of his career in terms of a game that caught the nation’s attention. may decrease as If so, what are the ways to do it? After all the soul-crushing losses in Nebraska, Martinez finally enjoyed a night out in the limelight, and for all good reasons. Bow down, Adrian. you deserve it.