A Midseason All-American by The Sporting News and one of 15 semifinalists for the Chuck Bednarik Award as the nation's top defensive player, Hughes has 14 sacks. No other player in the country has more than 11. The 14 sacks have set a Mountain West Conference record and are closing in on the TCU mark of 17 established by Bo Schobel in 2003.
A junior from Sugar Land, Texas, Hughes is third in the nation with 17.5 tackles for loss while tying for third with five forced fumbles. He is tied for fourth in the nation with three fumble recoveries. He also has two interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown.
Hughes was the Walter Camp Football Foundation and FWAA/Bronko Nagurski Trophy National Defensive Player of the Week after his four sacks and two forced fumbles in a 32-7 win over then-No. 8 BYU. He is a three-time Mountain West Conference Defensive Player of the Week this season.
Hughes anchors a TCU defense that leads the nation in run defense (39.5 yards per game) and sacks (40) while ranking second in total defense (220.0 yards per game) and third in scoring defense (11.0 points per game).
The 15th-ranked Horned Frogs are 9-2 overall and 6-1 in the Mountain West Conference.