Pac-12 top 25 for 2011: No. 17

Our countdown of the Pac-12's top 25 players continues.

You can see the final post-2010 top 25 here. It doesn't, however, include players from Colorado or Utah.

17. Rodney Stewart, RB, Colorado

2010 numbers: Stewart rushed for 1,318 yards and 10 touchdowns, averaging 4.5 yards per carry. He also caught 29 passes for 290 yards.

2010 ranking: Unranked (played in the Big 12)

Making the case for Stewart: Stewart, at 5-foot-6, 175 pounds, is even smaller than former Oregon State might-mite Jacquizz Rogers, but just like Rodgers, he's a productive workhorse. He earned second-team All-Big 12 honors from The Associated Press, the Fort Worth-Star Telegram, the Kansas City Star and Phil Steele but -- as the Colorado media guide notes -- "was inexplicably snubbed by the [Big 12] coaches, most of whom he ran all over." Got to love opinionated media guides, particularly one that adds, "The coaches leaving him completely off their all-league team was even more perplexing (but likely due to CU’s departing the conference for the Pac-12) as his 916 yards in eight Big 12 games were the second most in league play, and just one yard behind leader Kendall Hunter (Oklahoma State)." Stewart's 109.8 yards per game ranked third in the Big 12 and 12th in the NCAA and would have ranked second in the Pac-10. His 1,318 yards in 2010 were the fifth highest single season total in CU history. Stewart is fifth on the school's all-time rushing list with 2,744 yards and he needs just 256 to become the fourth player at Colorado to rush for 3,000 yards and 1,197 to overtake Eric Bieniemy (his new position coach) for the school’s all-time record. He is one of 66 players on the watch list for the Maxwell Award (nation’s most outstanding player), and is also one of 51 players on the watch list for the Doak Walker Award (nation’s top running back). He gives the Pac-12 five running backs who eclipsed the 1,000-yard benchmark in 2010.

18. Jermaine Kearse, WR, Washington

19. Chase Thomas, LB, Stanford

20. Jeff Tuel, QB, Washington State

21. Robert Woods, WR, USC

22. Johnathan Franklin, RB, UCLA

23. David Paulson, TE, Oregon

24. David DeCastro, OG, Stanford

25. Marquess Wilson, WR, Washington State