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If you click the Ohio State link in the poll chart linked above, it takes you to an article written by Stewart Mandel, and in it there's a section that lists "Key Returnees (2003 stats)" in which it says A.J. Hawk was the "Nation's leading active rusher (3,706 yards)".
Well, if you remeber correctly, this all happened after the Fiesta Bowl when Maurice Clarett commented that he would like to switch to linebacker. That move forced AJ down the depth chart and subsequently he switch positions to tailback. Seems AJ was playing out of position, because his 3000+ yards last season was one of the best in the history of OSU football. I often thank Maurice for deciding to play linebacker.