Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Pac-12 top 25 for 2012: No. 10
By Ted Miller
Our countdown of the top 25 players in 2012 continues.
You can see our preseason top 25 here.
No. 10: Markus Wheaton, WR, Oregon State
2012 numbers: Wheaton caught 91 passes for 1,244 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also rushed for 142 yards -- 7.1 yards per carry -- and two scores.
Preseason ranking: Unranked
Making the case for Wheaton: Marqise Lee was the best receiver in the Pac-12 and the nation last year. Wheaton, who shared first-team All-Pac-12 honors with Lee, might have been second best. Despite the Beavers' quarterback carousel, he ranked 17th in the nation in receptions per game (7.0) and yards per game (95.7). He averaged a robust 13.7 yards per reception and was tied for second in the conference with 11 touchdowns receptions. But what was most notable about Wheaton, who figures to be an early-round NFL draft pick this spring, is how he showed up every week. Other than a two-receptions game against Washington -- sorry to mention that bit of passing ugliness, Beavers fans -- he caught at least five passes in every other game. Check that. He only caught four passes against Arizona State, but those went for 108 yards and two touchdowns. He had five games with over 100 yards receiving, but his high was "only" 166 yards. In 10 of 13 games, he was over 80 yards receiving. That's consistency, even when every opposing defense knew he was the Beavers first option on offense. It will be interesting to see what Wheaton runs in the 40-yard dash at the NFL combine. We do know he's pretty fast in the 100 meters.
No. 11: Anthony Barr, LB, UCLA
No. 12: Jordan Poyer, CB, Oregon State
No. 13: Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford
No. 14: Matt Barkley, QB, USC
No. 15: Brett Hundley, QB, UCLA
No. 16: Trent Murphy, OLB, Stanford
No. 17: Chase Thomas, OLB, Stanford
No. 18: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, CB, Oregon
No. 19: David Yankey, OL, Stanford
No. 20: Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon
No. 21: Scott Crichton, DE, Oregon State
No. 22: Ed Reynolds, S, Stanford
No. 23: Michael Clay, LB, Oregon
No. 24: Taylor Kelly, QB, Arizona State
No. 25: Reggie Dunn, KR, Utah