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September 1, 2008Born in the heart of Big Ten country, Central Michigan quarterback Dan LeFevour barely received a sniff from recruiters there.
Think that would be the case if they knew what the college football world does now?
Last year as a sophomore, LeFevour became just the second player in Bowl Subdivision history to throw for 3,000 yards and rush for 1,000 in the same year, joining former Texas All-American Vince Young in that exclusive club.
Want more numbers?
LeFevour became the first quarterback to lead his team to a MAC title as a freshman and a sophomore, and last year twice set school records for total offense with 506 yards at Ball State and 514 yards at Akron.
In the Motor City Bowl against Purdue, LeFevour threw for 292 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 114 yards and two scores in the Motor City Bowl against Purdue.
"We still hope to develop more consistency as an offense," said LeFevour, who directs the CMU spread, patterned after what Urban Meyer tries to do at Florida. "Basically, we just come out with our lunch pail and hard hat every week and try to execute what we do best."
Eastern Illinois coach Bob Spoo can certainly attest to how efficient CMU and LeFevour can be. LeFevour comes into Saturday's game at Georgia (3:30 p.m.) off a 217-yard passing performance with three touchdowns which he used to lead the Chippewas to a 31-12 win over the Panthers.
"He's a great player. He keeps his eyes downfield and he lets the game come to him. When plays break down, he can make things happen with his legs and that's what good players do," Spoo said. "We had a couple chances to get to him that he slipped away from us, but he's a great athlete and you have to give him credit for making plays."
LeFevour certainly has the attention of Georgia coach Mark Richt.
"He's a very versatile, run-pass threat," said Richt. "If you watch his style of play, he'd be like Chase Daniel (Missouri), not body-type but similar in style of play. He's an outstanding passer and a good runner. Statistically, he's a top-five Heisman-type candidate."
Here's just a few more example:
Named MAC Championship Game MVP after passing for 185 yards and a touchdown and rushing for a career-high 170 yards and two touchdowns against Miami-Ohio.
Four-time MAC West Division Offensive Player of the Week .
Selected USA Today National Player of the Week for performance against Army (10/13).
Threw for 251 yards and two scores and ran for 100 yards and four touchdowns against Army.
Posted a pair of 300-yard passing, 100-yard rushing efforts.
Caught a 32-yard touchdown pass from Duane Brooks against Northern Illinois.
All total, LeFevour finished with 27 touchdown passes and 19 rushing touchdowns, and along with his touchdown catch, he played a role in 47 touchdowns last fall for Central Michigan, which finished 8-6 overall but won the MAC with a 6-1 record.
"He's had a lot of success, but he's about as humble a player as you'll see," Central Michigan coach Butch Jones said.
Saturday's game against the Bulldogs won't be LeFevour's first against an SEC foe. Central Michigan played Kentucky in September of 2006, a game that marked the quarterback's collegiate debut.
He entered the game with the Chippewas trailing 21-0.
Thanks to LeFevour, the Chippewas made it a game. The quarterback threw for 360 yards and four touchdowns and chipped in with 47 yards rushing. Central Michigan lost the game 45-36, but Jones found the offensive answer that his team had been looking for.
With eight offensive starters back from last year, LeFevour hopes that experience pays off this fall.
"We got off to kind of a slow start offensive last year and as a group we want to start faster this year," LeFevour said before the season. "We're just going to come out swinging and hope we can have a better season."