It's crunch time for Ka'Deem Carey, who — within a matter of hours — can become the first Arizona Wildcats player to ever receive Heisman Trophy votes. The trophy will be awarded at 6 p.m. on ESPN. 

The nation's leader in rushing yards per game, Carey — a sophomore who prepped at Canyon del Oro High School — figures to use this year's vote as a springboard for 2013. Carey is projected to finish tied for 16th in Heisman Trophy voting, according to a website that has accurately predicted the last 10 winners. has Carey garnering six third-place votes, giving him 0.2 percent of the totals. The projections, if true, will make Carey the first-ever Arizona Wildcats player to earn a Heisman vote.

That would mean "a lot," Carey said this week. "It would mean that my fans are out there rooting for me. It’s an honor. Just getting recognized, it’s great."

Just a sophomore, Carey leads the nation with 146.42 rushing yards per game and is second in total rushing with 1,757 yards. The Sporting News and Walter Camp both named Carey a first-team All-American this week, making him Arizona’s first since Antoine Cason in 2007.

The sports editor of the Arizona Daily Star.