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September 5, 2010

Michigan's Robinson earns opening week honors

CONFERENCE PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
ACC
North Carolina QB T.J. Yates was 28-of-45 for 410 yards and four touchdowns in a 30-24 loss to LSU.
BIG EAST
Syracuse FS Mike Holmes recorded six tackles, a sack and scored a touchdown on a blocked field goal in a 29-3 victory at Akron.
BIG 12
Kansas State TB Daniel Thomas carried 28 times for 234 yards and two touchdowns in a 33-21 win over UCLA.
CONFERENCE USA
East Carolina QB Dominique Davis was 27-of-47 passes for 383 yards and five touchdowns in a wild 51-49 victory over visiting Tulsa. Davis, who was making his first start for ECU, completed a 33-yard Hail Mary pass to Justin Jones as time expired for the win. Davis, who started at Boston College in 2008 but then flunked out, also rushed for a touchdown.
MID-AMERICAN
Temple K Brandon McManus booted field goals of 53, 44, 40 and 43 yards, including the go-ahead score, in a 31-24 win over defending FCS champion Villanova on Friday.
MOUNTAIN WEST
Utah QB Jordan Wynn was 21-of-36 for 283 yards and three touchdowns in a 27-24 OT victory over Pittsburgh on Thursday.
PAC-10
Oregon RB Kenjon Barner carried 17 times for 147 yards with four touchdowns in a 72-0 demolition of New Mexico. He also caught a 60-yard pass for a touchdown. Barner started because starting RB LaMichael James had been suspended for the opener.
SEC
South Carolina QB Stephen Garcia was 16-of-23 for 193 yards in a 41-13 rout of Southern Miss on Thursday. He also rushed for 38 yards and two touchdowns on five carries.
SUN BELT
Florida Atlantic RB Alfred Morris rushed for 103 yards and the game-winning touchdown on 16 carries as the Owls rallied for a 32-31 upset at UAB on Thursday.
WESTERN ATHLETIC
Fresno State DT Logan Harrell had five tackles, four sacks and a forced fumble in a 28-14 victory over Cincinnati.
INDEPENDENTS
Army FB Jared Hassin rushed for 68 yards and three touchdowns on 12 carries in a 31-27 victory at Eastern Michigan. Hassin, a sophomore, hadn't played football in two years. He originally went to Air Force but left after attending one week of class in 2008 before deciding to transfer to Army.

Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez kept his plans for his starting quarterback for the opener against Connecticut close to the vest until Saturday's kickoff.

But if Denard Robinson looked as good in practice as he did in the game against the Huskies, Rodriguez's poker face is among the best.

Robinson was 19-of-22 passes for 186 yards and a touchdown in the 30-10 rout. He also rushed for 197 yards, a school record for a quarterback, and a touchdown on 29 carries to earn Rivals.com National Player of the Week honors.

"Denard Robinson is going to make people look bad," Connecticut coach Randy Edsall. "That guy is an extra running back back there. He's an outstanding athlete."

Robinson's performance was reminiscent of Rodriguez's best player at West Virginia, quarterback Pat White, whom the Miami Dolphins cut on Saturday.

While Robinson, a sophomore from Deerfield Beach, Fla., appears to have any doubt about the quarterback job -- Tate Forcier, last season's starter, didn't leave the bench, even while Robinson briefly was sidelined by an injury -- it remains to be seen if 20-plus carries will be the norm.

"It really depends on how they play us," Rodriguez said. "He probably ran more than we'd like. I think that's a little bit much, but at the same time, he can handle it. He's bigger and stronger, but there were probably a few times that he ran when he could have given it up -- and vice versa. I think he'll keep learning from that, but he can handle it."

NATIONAL FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK: QB Taylor Martinez, Nebraska
As with Rodriguez, Nebraska coach Bo Pelini waited until game day to name his starting quarterback. As with Rodriguez, his selection was effective, albeit against lesser competition.

Redshirt freshman Martinez took the Huskers' first snap in a 49-10 win over Western Kentucky and doesn't look likely to give up the job.

Martinez was 9-of-15 for 136 yards, and he was even more dangerous on the ground with 127 yards and three touchdowns on seven carries.

NATIONAL COORDINATOR OF THE WEEK: Dick Bumpas, TCU
Jerry Hughes is gone, but TCU's defense is far from a one-man show. Unless, that is, the man is coordinator Dick Bumpas, whose unit has led the nation in total defense in each of the past two seasons.

Bumpas earns Coordinator of the Week honors for his defense's first game in 2010; the Horned Frogs held Oregon State to 73 rushing yards and 2.9 yards per carry in a 30-21 win.

Oregon State's Jacquizz Rodgers rushed for 1,440 yards and 21 touchdowns last season, but he was held to 75 yards and one score against TCU.

David Fox is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at dfox@rivals.com.



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