Under the radar: Kansas State Wildcats

Time for the next team in our series examining one player on each Big 12 team who will enter 2012 with a profile that doesn't quite match his worth to the team.

In other words, they're coming in under the radar.

Next up: the Kansas State Wildcats

Under the radar: DE Meshak Williams and RB John Hubert

Both players deserved a nod, and I couldn't pick one over the other.

Quarterback Collin Klein's 1,000-yard rushing season and 27 touchdowns earned all the attention on Kansas State's offense, but Hubert quietly emerged in the wake of Bryce Brown's rather spectacular flame out early in the 2011 season. Brown proved to be all hype and little substance, but Hubert was the exact opposite.

The little-known Waco, Texas, native rushed for 970 yards last season, giving Kansas State two of the Big 12's top three returning rushers in 2012. He's not physically imposing, but he's a huge part of Kansas State's relentless rushing attack. If Klein didn't beat you, Hubert did. He rushed for 166 yards in a razor-thin win over Miami, and added 126 yards as Kansas State put Mizzou on ice.

Meanwhile, Williams emerged as a breakthrough player in 2011 on the defensive line. He notched seven sacks as a junior, and Texas' Jackson Jeffcoat is the only returning Big 12 talent with more, save TCU newcomer Stansly Maponga. The juco transfer joins Hubert in being undersized for their positions, but the 6-foot-3, 245-pound Williams wasn't slowed by his stature. He wreaked havoc on Big 12 defenses, notching 10 tackles for loss and forcing a fumble.

It'll be tough for Hubert to surpass Klein as the team's leading rusher, but don't overlook Williams as a dark horse for the Big 12's Defensive Player of the Year. Sounds hard to believe, but it's a distinct possibility.