Three weeks into the 2019 FCS college football season, a handful of players have stood out.
They’ve put up outrageous stats, led their teams to outstanding victories and pulled off some incredible highlights.
Here's a handful of players who are off to stellar starts, and ones that fans should keep an eye on for the rest of the season.
Trey Lance, North Dakota State, Quarterback
Some were fair to question what NDSU’s passing attack might look like this season after Easton Stick handed the reins over to Trey Lance. Stick, after all, was the all-time winningest quarterback in FCS history with a record 49-3. But the Bison haven’t missed a beat with Lance under center. The redshirt freshman has guided NDSU to a 3-0 start, with wins over Butler, North Dakota and a ranked Delaware team.
Lance leads the FCS in points responsible for this season, scoring 78. The 6-foot-3 native of Marshall, Minnesota has thrown for nine touchdowns and 542 yards, while also rushing for 234 yards and four scores. He’s been almost mistake-free too, having not yet thrown an interception this season. With Lance at the helm, it seems like the Bison are on their way back to the FCS playoffs.
Trey Lance.— NDSU Football (@NDSUfootball) August 31, 2019
Tough to tackle.
Tough to catch. pic.twitter.com/uMGJru851K
Lujuan Winningham, Central Arkansas, Wide Receiver
The Central Arkansas Bears are up to the No. 12 ranking in the nation this week, and the spectacular play of Lujuan Winningham at wide receiver is a big reason why the Bears are off to a 3-0 start. Winningham, a redshirt sophomore, leads the nation in receiving touchdowns with six and is second in the nation in receiving yards with 477 yards. He’s made the most out of his 22 catches through three games, averaging 21.68 yards per reception.
The 6-foot-3 Humble, Texas native has surpassed his totals from last season with flying colors, as he had just 12 catches for 158 yards and a score in 10 games. Winningham has emerged as the No. 1 target in the Bears offense, and that was evident in Week 1 when the Bears upset the FBS Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, as he hauled in eight catches for 222 yards and three scores.
Andre Walker, Houston Baptist, Defensive End
Houston Baptist is 2-1 this season, and its lone loss was a close one against FBS side UTEP. In each game this season, the defense has been anchored by the play-making abilities of Andre Walker, who leads all of FCS in tackles-for-loss this season with 9.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage.
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A 6-foot-1 senior from Slidell, Louisiana, Walker also has 7.5 sacks, a forced fumble and three quarterback hits on the season. No offensive line this season has been able to stop Walker, who is causing havoc in opposing backfields. Walker came up big in the Huskies’ Week 3 road win over South Dakota, notching four sacks.
Houston Baptist with clearly the best win in its young program's history (began 2013) -- over MVFC's South Dakota.— Brian McLaughlin (@BrianMacWriter) September 14, 2019
DE Andre Walker (@ITZANDR3000) with a big sack and hurry to force an INT to end USD's final threat
QB Bailey Zappe (@baileyzappe04) throws for 513 yds and 5 TDs https://t.co/2iYiDpLs58
Jah-Maine Martin, North Carolina A&T, Running Back
Following in the footsteps of Mike Mayhew, Tarik Cohen and others, Jah-Maine Martin might be the next great running back for the Aggies. Through three games this season, a 2-1 mark for the Aggies, Martin has totaled 435 rushing yards, which leads all of FCS football. Martin has entered the end zone four times and is also third in the nation in rushing yards per-carry with a 7.77 mark on 56 touches.
Martin, a redshirt junior transfer from Coastal Carolina, had his lowest output so far this season in a loss to the FBS Duke Blue Devils, but still put up a respectable line of 82 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. Martin also has three catches this season.