SEC freshman tracker: Derrius Guice outrushes Leonard Fournette in Week 6

It was a light week in the SEC and a light week for the true freshmen. Here’s a look at the top freshman performances from Week 6.

Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama: Guess who’s back on the list? Ridley caught his third touchdown in as many games, and this one was arguably the biggest in his young career. With Alabama trailing 7-3 late in the third quarter, Ridley made a double move, got behind the defense and caught an 81-yard touchdown to give the Crimson Tide the lead. The former ESPN 300 star led the team with nine catches for 140 yards and the long touchdown.

Derrius Guice, RB, LSU: This from a South Carolina defender after the game: “Fournette’s a great back … but No. 5 [Guice] was the guy that really impressed me today.” Now obviously, Guice is not better than Leonard Fournette. But it was the freshman, not Fournette, who led LSU with 161 yards and a touchdown on just 16 carries. And it was Guice who had arguably the most impressive run of the day when he somehow escaped two defenders in the backfield, ran through what seemed like the entire defense, and picked up 25 yards.

Rico McGraw, CB, Georgia: After missing the previous three games with a knee injury, McGraw got the start at cornerback Saturday. He finished with eight tackles and a pass break-up, but his best series came early in the fourth quarter with the game tied. First, he helped blow up a quick pass to Jalen Hurd for a loss of three. Then, on the very next play, he made another great open-field tackle, forcing Tennessee to punt two plays later. Georgia ultimately lost the game, 38-31, but the Nashville native was impressive in a return to his home state.

Daron Payne, DT, Alabama: Statistically, Payne might not look like he made much impact in Alabama’s 27-14 win over Arkansas. He finished with just three tackles. But that’s the life of a nose tackle. Take on blocks, plug the middle and let the guys around you get all the credit. Payne was plenty good at doing that. The 6-foot-2, 315-pound freshman has come on for this defense in recent weeks and was rewarded with his first start Saturday. It won’t be his last.

Trenton Thompson, DT, Georgia: It’s hard to imagine having two Georgia defenders on here after the Bulldogs gave up 38 points to Tennessee, but you can’t ignore what Thompson was able to do. Making his second career start, the freshman defensive lineman recorded eight tackles, including a tackle on Alvin Kamara in the backfield that lost four yards. Thompson, the No. 3 player overall in the ESPN 300, is starting to live up to the hype.

Honorable mention: Florida's CeCe Jefferson and Missouri's Terry Beckner Jr. each recorded a sack in their game Saturday night.