Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
Matt Scott may have been snubbed for a national honor earlier this week, but backfield mate Ka'Deem Carey'scontributions to the potent Arizona offense have not gone unnoticed. Carey was added to the Maxwell Award watch list on Wednesday.
The Maxwell Award is given to college football's most outstanding player, and is often a prelude to the Heisman Trophy. There's no coincidence Carey's inclusion among the most celebrated players in the nation comes immediately following his most productive outing of the season.
Carey rushed for a career high 172 yards against Washington, and was on a pace for 200 before head coach Rich Rodriguez opted to bench him when the Wildcats went ahead five scores. The Tucson native Carey also scored one touchdown, bringing his season total to 11 -- and the single season Arizona record within sight.
Wildcat legend Art Luppino set a benchmark that has stood nearly five decades when, in 1954, he rushed for 21 touchdowns. Luppino led the nation in rushing yards that same season, a feat he accomplished twice while in Tucson. Though unlikely, it's not entirely inconceivable for Carey to at least approach that milestone. He's currently No. 11 in the Bowl Subdivision with 120.3 yards per game.
More feasible though is Carey matching Luppino's touchdown mark. He would need to average two scores per outing the rest of the way to tie Luppino, but Carey has momentum with over half of his touchdowns coming in the last three games.
With a score in every game except Oregon, Carey's 11 this season already have him tied with Trung Canidate for fourth most in one campaign. Nic Grigsby's 13 scored in 2008 could be matched or surpassed this weekend, though Carey would need an especially noteworthy performance.
The Trojan rush defense is No. 17 in the country, allowing just 109.6 yards per game. USC has also given up just four rushing touchdowns all season. Coincidentally, two of Carey's three multiple touchdown games came against rush defenses ranked Nos. 4 and 5 nationally: Oregon State and Stanford.
The sophomore back might relish the opportunity to again flourish against a top front seven.