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THEY WERE the favorites going into the season, and nothing has happened to suggest that Reggie Bush, Matt Leinart and Vince Young won't be in New York City when the Heisman Trophy is handed out on Dec. 10. But here are five other players who could be making the trip.
BRADY QUINN QB Notre Dame
He has thrived under new coach Charlie Weis's tutelage, passing for 50% more yards per game (324.2) than he did in 2004 and throwing for 13 touchdowns, just four fewer than he had last season. He has a chance to move the Heisman needle significantly this Saturday against No. 1 USC and on Nov. 5 against Tennessee.
He lacks the flashy stats (173.8 passing yards per game, 10 touchdowns, two interceptions), but he'll attract votes if he can lead the third-ranked Hokies to the national title game.
He vaulted into the race with a three-touchdown game in a 31-3 rout of Florida on Oct. 1. He still has high-profile matchups against Tennessee, LSU and Auburn to make his case, but working against him is a 'Bama defense that's so good that Croyle doesn't have to post Heisman-type stats.
A.J. HAWK LB Ohio State
Hawk (left) has been the nation's best defender (49 tackles, 3 1/2 sacks, one interception), but he faces long odds. Only one defensive player-- Michigan corner Charles Woodson in '97--has taken home the trophy.