Here's my Maxwell Pundit ballot for week five. Keep up with the national standings over at Rakes of Mallow.
1. Northern Illinois running back Garrett Wolfe. Wolfe's ridiculous, outrageous, ludicrous 353 yards and three TDs this weekend brought his average to mind boggling 236 yards per game. That's about 75 more yards per game on average than any other running back, including Adrian Peterson. Okay, so most of Wolfe's stats have come against questionable competition, but I will remind you again: 171 at Ohio State. Wolfe's on pace to break the single-season rushing record set by Barry Sanders in 1988.
2. and 3. Ohio State QB Troy Smith and Florida QB Chris Leak. Smith's numbers are solid: 1,070 yards, 12 TDs, and a passing efficiency of 163.7. Leak's are even better: 1,240 yards, 12 TDs, and an efficiency rating of 174.1. Both the Buckeyes and the Gators have strong schedules, but if Leak keeps pace over the Gators' upcoming three-out-of-four game gauntlet of death, he'll leapfrog Smith in my book. Tangent warning! Wonder of wonders, Tennessee QB Erik Ainge has a higher efficiency rating (179.9) than either Leak or Smith. It's wavy, melting in the horizon, looking like a mirage, but if turns out to actually be an oasis, all bets are off.
4. and 5. Georgia Tech receiver Calvin Johnson and Tennessee receiver Robert Meachem. Everybody's talking about Johnson, and having actually gotten a peak at him this weekend, I see why. His 25 catches for 426 yards and seven TDs rank him only 22nd nationally in receiving yards per game, but he's a gamer, and he seems to have that . . . thing . . . that can only be described with a palindrome: wow. Meachem's "wowsiness" is a bit more subdued, but his numbers are better than Johnson's. Meachem ranks 3rd in the nation with 27 receptions for 577 yards and five TDs, and he's averaging roughly 115 yards per game.
Also watching: Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson, West Virginia running back Steve Slaton, Michigan receiver Mario Manningham, Ohio State linebacker James Laurinaitis, Notre Dame QB Brady Quinn, and Pittsburgh QB Tyler Palko.