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September 9, 2008

Power rankings: Pitta on top at tight end

Rivals.com Power Rankings by Position: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DL | LB | DB | ST
Coaches Power Rankings: Head Coach | Off. Coordinator | Def. Coordinator

The guy leading the nation in receiving isn't a wide receiver at all.

That honor instead goes to BYU tight end Dennis Pitta, who has caught 21 passes for 361 yards through his first two games of the season. Pitta ranks first in the nation in receiving yards per game and total catches.

Pitta also now finds himself atop the Rivals.com Power Rankings, which measure the nation's top players and coaches at each position. He surged to the top of the tight end rankings on the strength of his performance Saturday in a 28-27 victory over Washington. Pitta caught 10 passes for 148 yards, including a tie-breaking 15-yard touchdown catch with 3:31 left.

"Dennis is just a good football player," BYU quarterback Max Hall said after the game. "He's fast. He's strong. He's big. He can get open. He made some key plays for us some third-down conversions that were huge for us in the game. He's a go-to guy and I'm glad I have him.''

Pitta vaulted ahead of Missouri's Chase Coffman, but the Tigers still had plenty of representatives atop the power rankings.

Missouri's Chase Daniel took over the top spot in the quarterback rankings after going 16-of-17 for 245 yards and three touchdowns in a 52-3 thrashing of Division I-AA Southeast Missouri State. Daniel displaced Tim Tebow of Florida from the No. 1 spot.

Daniel joined linebacker Sean Weatherspoon and offensive coordinator Dave Christensen at the top of the rankings. Other players and coaches remaining atop their respective positions include Ohio State running back Chris Wells, Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree, Ole Miss offensive tackle Michael Oher, South Florida defensive end George Selvie, Ohio State cornerback Malcolm Jenkins, USC coach Pete Carroll and UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker.

The rating of a player and coach can fluctuate each week during the season depending on how they fared the previous week, but the power rankings measure overall career performances as well as their most recent results.

Rivals.com Power Rankings by Position: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DL | LB | DB | ST
Coaches Power Rankings: Head Coach | Off. Coordinator | Def. Coordinator

Steve Megargee is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at smegargee@rivals.com.

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