- Todd McShay, Scouts Inc.
The opportunity is there every Saturday. Some players seize it. Others let it slide away. Here's a look at the players who shined or slipped in Week 12:
Xavier Adibi, OLB, Virginia Tech
Adibi came up with the biggest play during the most impressive outing of the 2006 season for the nation's top-ranked defense. The junior inside linebacker picked up a Kevin Harris fumble and returned it 35 yards to pay dirt. The score proved to be all Virginia Tech needed in its dominant 27-6 victory over then-No. 14 ranked Wake Forest. The Hokies limited the Demon Deacons to just 62 rushing yards on the evening.
Since defensive coordinator Bud Foster removed the symbolic lunch pail from the sideline following consecutive losses to Georgia Tech and Boston College, his defense has surrendered just 29 combined points during a five-game winning streak. A victory over Virginia on Saturday will give the Hokies a 10-win season.
Nick Davila, QB, Cincinnati
Davila's first career start was certainly a memorable one, as the senior signal-caller led Cincinnati to the biggest upset in school history on Senior Night at Nippert Stadium. Davila completed 11 of 15 passes for 277 yards and a touchdown in the upset of previously unbeaten and then-No. 7 ranked Rutgers. Coach Mark Dantonio's defense also deserves notice for limiting running back Ray Rice, who entered the game as the nation's third-leading rusher, to only 54 yards on 18 carries, while also forcing four turnovers on the evening.
Troy Smith defeated Michigan, locked up the Heisman and helped his NFL stock, writes Todd McShay. Who else saw their stock rise or fall?