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October 18, 2011

Power rankings: Broyles grabs top spot

Rivals.com Power Rankings by Position: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DL | LB | DB | ST
Coaches Power Rankings: Head Coach | Off. Coordinator | Def. Coordinator

Oklahoma's Ryan Broyles insisted that becoming the most prolific receiver in college football history wasn't on his mind the moment he set the NCAA record for career catches.

"No, I was thinking about scoring," Broyles said Saturday after his record-setting performance in Oklahoma's 47-17 victory over Kansas. "I was happy after it happened, got to the sideline and got a little emotional. It really started to set in for me."

Sure enough, Broyles accomplished both goals by setting the record with a 57-yard touchdown catch. Broyles caught 13 passes for 217 yards and two touchdowns Saturday to give himself 326 career catches. The record formerly was held by Taylor Stubblefield, who caught 316 passes for Purdue from 2001-04.

Broyles' two touchdown catches gave him 44 for his career, which set a Big 12 record. Broyles headed into Saturday sharing the record with Rashaun Woods, who caught 42 touchdown passes for Oklahoma State from 2000-03.

Broyles' big night made him the new No. 1 receiver in the Rivals.com College Football Power Rankings, which measure the nation's top performers at each position. Broyles moved ahead of Oklahoma State's Justin Blackmon, who caught seven passes for 74 yards and a touchdown in a 38-26 victory over Texas.

"Ryan Broyles was just out of this world," OU coach Bob Stoops told reporters after the game. "When you set a national record, that's pretty special. But to do it with over 200 yards is unreal."

Alabama's Trent Richardson and Stanford's Coby Fleener also moved to the top of their respective positions in this week's power rankings.

Richardson regained his status as the nation's No. 1 running back after rushing for 183 yards and four touchdowns in a 52-7 blowout of Ole Miss.

"No one has been able to tackle him consistently this year," Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt said after the game.

Richardson took over the top spot from Oregon's LaMichael James, who sat out a 41-27 victory over Arizona State with a dislocated elbow. South Carolina's Marcus Lattimore, the No. 1 running back earlier this season, drops out of the power rankings entirely this week after suffering a season-ending knee injury Saturday in a 14-12 victory over Mississippi State.

Fleener moved back to the top of the tight end rankings after catching four passes for 128 yards and a touchdown in a 44-14 rout of Washington State.

Fleener moved ahead of Georgia's Orson Charles, who caught five passes for 33 yards in a 33-28 victory over Vanderbilt.

The other change at the top of the power rankings comes in the special teams category.

Oklahoma State's Quinn Sharp is the nation's new No. 1 special teams performer after averaging 46.3 yards per punt and making a 22-yard field goal in a 38-26 triumph over Texas. Sharp is 10-of-11 on field goals this season, and his punting average of 48.4 would lead the nation if he had enough attempts to qualify. Sharp took over the top spot from Nebraska return man Ameer Abdullah, whose team was idle last weekend.

Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson, Boise State offensive tackle Nate Potter, Illinois defensive end Whitney Mercilus, Boston College linebacker Luke Kuechly, LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, Alabama coach Nick Saban, Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris and LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis remained atop their respective positions.

The rankings put a special emphasis on recent performances while also taking career achievements into consideration. Our coordinator rankings exclude coordinators who don't call their own plays or signals.

Rivals.com Power Rankings by Position: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DL | LB | DB | ST
Coaches Power Rankings: Head Coach | Off. Coordinator | Def. Coordinator

Steve Megargee is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at smegargee@rivals.com, and you can click here to follow him on Twitter.

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