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CFB Barometer: Who's Up, Down Week 3

Jesse Siegel

Jesse Siegel

Siegel covers college football, college basketball and minor league baseball for RotoWire. He was named College Sports Writer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.

If you didn't know the name T.Y. Hilton before Florida International's 24-17 victory against Louisville on Friday, you should know it now. Hilton torched the Cardinals for 201 yards receiving and two touchdowns for the 2010 Sun Belt Champions. With Tulsa's Damaris Johnson suspended indefinitely, Hilton could be the frontrunner to lead the nation in all-purpose yards. The senior Panther has 14 receptions for 333 yards and three touchdowns, averaging a ridiculous 23.8 yards per catch. The dynamic big-play threat has also returned four kicks for 159 yards, and has even rushed twice for 49 yards. Hilton returns punts as well, though hasn't been able to break one yet. Nevertheless, Hilton is an explosive, dangerous weapon who can score in a plethora of ways. If not for the conference in which he plays, Hilton would certainly get some Heisman publicity.

Let's take a look at the rest of the college football landscape in this week's Barometer.

UPGRADES

Malcolm Brown, RB Texas -
Brown has stepped in for the Longhorns as a freshman and performed, averaging 5.1 yards per carry through the first two games of the season. He rushed for 68 yards in a tough win over BYU on Saturday. This week's opponent, UCLA, has limped to a 1-1 record, barely squeaking by San Jose State and falling to Houston in the opener. With spotty quarterback play for the Longhorns to boot, Brown could be in for an increased workload and superior output.

Anthony McClung, WR, Cincinnati -
D.J. Woods gets the pub for the Bearcats, and perhaps rightly so. Woods is the leading returning wideout for Cincinnati, and caught nine passes for 111 yards against Tennessee on Saturday. However, through Cincy's first two contests, quarterback Zach Collaros has found McClung three times in the end zone for scores. The 6-1 sophomore has become a favorite target in the red zone and has already surpassed his touchdown total from a year ago. With a void due to the departure of Armon Binns, McClung should find the promised land again this week against lowly Akron.

Rickey Galvin, RB, Washington State -
Galvin has been mighty impressive in his first two collegiate contests for the Cougars, rushing 12 times for 144 yards and three touchdowns in two blowout victories. Only a freshman, Galvin will be relied upon more now that starting quarterback Jeff Tuel is out due to a fractured collarbone. This week's opponent, San Diego State, allowed a staggering 403 yards rushing against Army's triple-option offense. Although Galvin will likely share some carries with fellow freshman Marcus Mason, Galvin has been the more successful back thus far.

Rakeem Cato, QB, Marshall -
Cato looked lost in Week 1 against an ultra-talented West Virginia squad, but bounced back in Week 2. The 6-foot-1 freshman out of Miami completed 27-of-42 passes for 275 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions in a stunning victory over Southern Miss. Cato gets to face Ohio of the MAC this week at home, and could be a nice sleeper if you're in desperate need of a quarterback and can endure some growing pains.

CHECK STATUS

Jeffrey Demps, RB, Florida -
Demps left Saturday's victory over UAB because of a shoulder injury. Demps did not get a chance to get going, carrying the ball two times for 10 yards while catching one ball for 10 yards before exiting. The Gators play host to Tennessee on Saturday in their first SEC matchup, and the Gators could choose to play it safe with Demps and give the majority of the carries to Chris Rainey and Mike Gillislee. Demps is a home-run hitter when healthy, but being dinged up heading into conference play is not ideal.

Nick Foles, QB, Arizona -
Foles has completed a staggering 76.3 percent of his passes through two games for the Wildcats en route to 810 yards and six touchdowns. However, the senior gunslinger hurt his knee against Oklahoma State last Thursday and is listed as probable for this week's tilt with Andrew Luck and Stanford. Foles will also be missing top target Juron Criner, who is likely out due to a recent appendectomy. The Wildcats also likely will be down early in this contest, meaning Foles might be forced to throw in spots where Arizona normally would not. As a result, it could be a dangerous contest for the senior.

Geraldo Boldewijn, WR, Boise State -
Boldewijn is supposed to be an integral part of the Boise State passing game in 2011, but is questionable for Friday's contest at Toledo due to eligibility concerns. Quarterback Kellen Moore seemed to have no problem finding other targets in the Broncos' season-opening triumph over Georgia, hitting nine receivers in the 35-21 win. Boldewijn is a beast at 6-4, 200, but obviously cannot contribute if he can't step onto the field. Check his status throughout the week.

Mike Trumpy, RB, Northwestern -
Trump missed last week's contest against Eastern Illinois due to concussion-like symptoms after suffering a head injury late in Northwestern's opener against Boston College. Trumpy rushed 15 times for 85 yards and a score before leaving that initial contest. If quarterback Dan Persa continues to miss time, though, the Wildcats will go with quarterback Kain Colter, who is somewhat of a rushing quarterback. He will take carries away from Trumpy if he plays. Northwestern also has Adonis Smith at tailback, and this week the Wildcats play the Army Black Knights, who allowed 49 points against Northern Illinois in their opener. In other words, the Wildcats could hold Trumpy out to be safe, and even if they don't, there might not be enough ball to go around to make him a suitable starter.

DOWNGRADES

Michael Shaw, RB, Michigan -
Even with starter Fitzgerald Toussaint out due to an undisclosed injury, Shaw received just two carries against Notre Dame on Saturday. The senior had a productive 2010 campaign, rushing 75 times for 402 yards and nine touchdowns for the Wolverines. However, it appears that he is in new coach Brady Hoke's doghouse. Although the Wolverines play Eastern Michigan this weekend, quarterback Denard Robinson is dominating the ball. Shaw is a risky play due to his current status.

E.J. Manuel QB, Florida State -
Manuel has had two cupcake victories to begin FSU's 2011 season, piloting the Seminoles to routs over ULM and Charleston Southern. The junior passed for 581 yards and six touchdowns in two games. However, he'll get his first stiff test of the 2011 season this week, as Florida State plays host to top-ranked Oklahoma in primetime Saturday night. Manuel has been efficient, but has also tossed two interceptions and been sacked three times. The learning curve could be too steep for Manuel in his first huge start of his career.

Darius Willis, RB, Indiana -
Willis hasn't been able to stay on the field for the Hoosiers. The starting running back at the beginning of 2010, the junior missed the bulk of the season due to a patellar tendon injury. He had surgery but is still not considered 100 percent and has not yet played in 2011. Willis has also battled ankle injuries throughout his brief Indiana career and was suspended for the opener due to conduct detrimental to the team. Willis was supposed to be the featured back for Indiana for at least the next year or two, but he can't seem to get his act together.

Josh Bellamy, WR, Louisville -
The Cardinals were supposed to lean on Bellamy in the passing game with uncertainty at the quarterback slot. But Bellamy hurt his hamstring after one quarter in Louisville's opener, and caught just one ball against FIU on Friday. Freshman DeVante Parker and Michaelee Harris have stepped up in Bellamy's absence and are developing a decent rapport with new quarterback Will Stein. With monstrous senior tight end Josh Chichester also in the mix, and an in-state matchup with Kentucky looming, it might be better to stay away from Bellamy, at least until he proves healthy.

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