Reyes and the H word? Just don't ask RJ Anderson

RJ Anderson flashed a sheepish smile and shook his head from side to side. <br><br> "I'm not gonna say anything," Anderson said. "You guys are trying to set me up."

It's a typical response from Anderson, who has shied away from questions when the words "Heisman," and, "Walter Reyes," have been mentioned in the same sentence. Still, one cannot overlook Reyes' credentials.

Reyes has been nothing short of brilliant this season, rushing for an average of 170.2 yards a game to go with his 10 touchdowns. The junior is averaging 7.4 yards a carry, and has rushed for a touchdown in each of his last nine games.

No game was more impressive than last week's 34-7 drumming of Toledo. Reyes rushed for 162 yards, including a 61-yard scamper for a touchdown.

"The most important thing is the win," Reyes said afterwards. "I want to help my team win."

His performance gained the respect of Toledo players and coaches.

"Walter Reyes is a great running back," Toledo head coach Tom Amstutz said. "He has great balance and instincts."

"You have to get Reyes," Toledo rover Paul Dye said, "before he finds a hole, or he is gone."

Reyes has credited the offensive line for much of his success, but Reyes has developed an incredible amount of patience in his three years at Syracuse, and it's finally paying off.

"He has a clear understanding of what the blocking scheme is in front of him, and he's kind of waiting for the blocks to be made," head coach Paul Pasqualoni said. "He's doing a very good job at that, which is obviously a sign of maturity."

His improvement has garnered national attention from around the country and Reyes will have an opportunity to showcase himself this Saturday, when the Orangemen head down to Virginia to play the No. 4 Hokies.

A sound performance would catapult Reyes into the thick of the Heisman race. Virginia Tech's defense has been suffocating so far, allowing a meager 16. 4 points a game.

"They're very athletic on defense," Pasqualoni said. "This isn't Canada where you play with 12 guys. If we had that extra guy, we'd be all set."

The Hokies boast a premier running back of their own, as Kevin Jones rushed for 118 yards and a touchdown against Rutgers last week. Jones has been nearly as productive as Reyes, collecting 551 yards on 102 carries.

"They run the ball so well, you have to do everything you can to stop them," Pasqualoni said. "I don't know what the plan is. But we need to stop them."

The best way to stop the opposing offense will be for Syracuse to keep its offense on the field for as long as possible, and that will involve running the ball as much as possible.

For right now, Syracuse has the dominos set up for a surprising season after going 4-8 last year. The defense is finally coming around, allowing just 10.5 points in the past two games. The offense has delivered, powering for more than 400 yards a game. Everything seems to be clicking.

"Everything is set up right now," Anderson said. "We just need to play our game."

And as for Reyes and the "H word?"

"Everything's set up right now," Anderson said, avoiding the question.

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