Alberta’s Chuba Hubbard rolling up NCAA real estate ... California’s ‘Pay-to-play’ may not be done deal ... No stopping Ohio State
His numbers are eye-popping. Through just five games of the NCAA football season, Alberta’s Chuba Hubbard has rumbled for 938 yards along the ground for the top total in the nation.
Hubbard’s averaging 7.3 yards per carry and has found the endzone 10 times while running the rock for the No. 21 Oklahoma State Cowboys. Fellow Canadians, all aboard the Chuba train!
Yup, the kid from Sherwood Park is turning heads and shedding tackles at a rapid rate.
Just like another Oklahoma State talent by the name of Barry Sanders a few decades back. You’ve heard of him, right? Sanders, with arguably the best moves ever seen on a football field, won the Heisman Trophy in 1988, setting 34 NCAA records along the way. The Kansas kid ran for 2,628 yards in the regular season, for an average of 238.9 yards per game and 37 rushing touchdowns.
Hubbard’s averaging 187.6 per game after last week’s gaudy 296yard performance in a win over the No. 24 Kansas State Wildcats. high-profile Wisconsin talent Jonathan Taylor is next best at a paltry 139.8 yards per game.
The 6-foot-1, 207-lb. former highschool star of the Bev Facey Falcons should break 1,000 yards in the Cowpokes’ game Saturday against the host Texas Tech Red Raiders (noon ET). The next best guy, Ohio State’s J.K. Dobbins, is a mile behind Hubbard (OK, more like one-third of a mile) with 654 yards.
Hubbard’s three 200-yard game efforts amount to a new school standard, even though both Sanders and — before him — Thurman Thomas were OK State superstars. All this and yet Hubbard is not getting a lot of Heisman looks, unlike Wiscy’s Taylor.
He’s not feeling the love from bookmakers, even though he’s ranked sixth on ESPN’S Heisman Watch list.
Caesars Sportsbook does, however, have him at 18-to-1 odds to win the honour.
“I think he should be in the Heisman running right now,” Sanders told the Associated Press. “He’s doing great, he’s a big asset to this team, and we’re just going to keep getting better each week.”
The issue is Hubbard’s on a team that’s considered a long-shot to earn a College Football Playoff berth, unlike the four front-runners — all quarterbacks — in No. 1 Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa, No. 4 Ohio State’s Justin Fields, No. 5 LSU’S Joe Burrow and No. 6 Oklahoma’s Jalen Hurts.
But if OK State, with a 4-1 record, continues to climb — up into the AP Top 25 for the first time this week — and Hubbard continues to chug along, he should draw more deserving Heisman notice.
That new California fair-pay-toplay act is ruffling a lot of feathers in college football, but remember the move — which made California the first state to allow student-athletes to profit off their names, images and likenesses — won’t go into effect until 2023, so there’s plenty of politicking and decisions yet to be made … No. 10 Florida (5-0) may have finally found a quarterback in Kyle Trask to put the program back on high ground. But FLA faces a gauntlet of games in the next four weeks — Saturday against No. 7 Auburn, Oct. 12 at LSU, Oct. 19 at South Carolina and Oct. 26 vs. Georgia … Weird stat of the week — it’s been eight years since Florida and Auburn last met, and they’re in the same conference … RB Lanard Fournette, Leonard’s little brother, has left LSU — both the team and the school — after spot duty throughout his career at Death Valley, including just 36 yards through four games this season … Another all-sec affair sees Troubled Tennessee (1-3) face No. 3 Georgia (4-0) on Saturday (7 p.m. ET) in a rivalry that hasn’t seen a ranked Rocky Top team beat UGA since 1955.
No. 4 Ohio State has won the last four games by at least 40 points, which ties the longest such streak since the AP Poll was introduced in 1936. The team’s 219-point margin of victory through the first five games of the season is the highest ever in the AP Poll era. OSU and its two Heisman hopefuls — QB Justin Fields and Ohio State’s DE Chase Young, who has eight sacks so far — get a visit from No. 25 Michigan State on Saturday (7:30 p.m. ET, ABC) … The Big Ten feature game pits No. 14 Iowa (4-0) against No. 19 Michigan (3-1) at the Big House early Saturday (noon ET, FOX).
Jim Harbaugh hasn’t beaten Iowa (where have Michigan fans heard that before?), and Big Blue has only beaten Iowa once dating back to 2006 … What do Iowa and Michigan have in common this year? Both have shut out lowly Rutgers (1-3) — Iowa in Week 2 30-0, and Michigan last week 52-0. The lopsided losses contributed to Sunday’s firing by Rutgers of head coach Chris Ash, who was an ugly 8-32 overall and got tagged with two winless seasons in conference play as part of a putrid 3-26 Big Ten record. Taking over Rutgers, for now, is interim head coach Nunzio Campanile, a legend at the New Jersey high school football level … Lovie Smith, the former NFL head coach, hasn’t been much better than Ash in three-plus seasons with lllinois at 4-24 in the Big Ten. Think he’s on the hot seat now?
There’s 18 unbeatens heading into Week 6. The surprises there? Minnesota, Wake Forest and SMU, which hasn’t been 5-0 since 1983 when it went 10-1 before losing the Sun Bowl to Alabama the year after the legendary Eric Dickerson graduated from the program … The only Power 5 conference without an undefeated team is — you guessed it — the Pac-12. That means it can kiss any final-four hopes goodbye … And say goodbye to Aurora, Air Force’s falcon mascot. The 23-year-old bird died Wednesday.
Sherwood Park standout Chuba Hubbard rushed for 296 yards last Saturday for the Oklahoma State University Cowboys and leads the entire NCAA in rushing yards.