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Welcome to the 2011 debut of The Next Level, a weekly Recruiting Report feature that focuses on natives of Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County and Howard County who appear on NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision rosters.

An unsuspecting intern will take over this feature starting next week, but for now, it'll be business as usual around these parts. We'll start with The Next Level Player of the Week, highlight a few honorable mention performances, and then get to the rest of the highlights from local college players.

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This college football season has started much like the 2010 campaign ended: with West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin earning Next Level Player of the Week honors. Austin, a former Dunbar star, caught three passes for 32 yards and returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown in the Mountaineers' lightning-shortened 34-13 win over in-state rival Marshall. Austin, whose 100-yard kickoff return tied a West Virginia record, was named Big East Special Teams Player of the Week.

He finished the game with 190 all-purpose yards, with 119 yards against the Thundering Herd on two kickoff returns and 46 yards on three punt returns.

The Next Level: Tavon Austin stars again

Honorable mention

• Making his Penn State debut, true freshman safety Adrian Amos (Calvert Hall) intercepted Indiana State quarterback Ronnie Fouch in the fourth quarter and returned the pick 46 yards to the Sycamores' 12. Amos also recorded two tackles (one solo) in the Nittany Lions' 41-7 win.

• In his first career start, Maryland sophomore safety Matt Robinson (Atholton) recorded 10 tackles (five solo) to help the Terps to a 32-24 win over Miami on Monday night.

• Syracuse's 36-29 win over Wake Forest featured major offensive contributions from two local players. For the Demon Deacons, sophomore Michael Campanaro (River Hill) caught seven passes for 79 yards and one touchdown. Campanaro also returned two punts for 12 yards and two kicks for 34 yards. For the Orange, junior wide receiver Alec Lemon (Arundel) had a team-best seven catches for 52 yards.

• Virginia Tech sophomore cornerback Kyle Fuller (Mount St. Joseph) recovered a blocked punt by Tony Gregory in the end zone for a touchdown in the Hokies' 66-13 rout of Appalachian State. Fuller also had four tackles (three solo).

Other contributions

• Arkansas junior fullback Kiero Small (Cardinal Gibbons) caught one pass for seven yards in the Razorbacks' 51-7 win over Missouri State.

• Arkansas State senior cornerback Darron Edwards (Dunbar) recorded six tackles (five solo) in the Red Wolves' 33-15 loss at Illinois.

• Army junior slotback Kelechi Odocha (Atholton) rushed three times for 20 yards in the Black Knights' 49-20 loss at Northern Illinois.

• Central Michigan sophomore safety Leron Eaddy (River Hill) assisted on one tackle in the Chippewas' 21-6 win over South Carolina State.

• Colorado State sophomore linebacker Shaquil Barrett (a Baltimore native who graduated from Boys Town High in Nebraska) made three tackles (one solo), and half a sack.

• Connecticut junior safety Jerome Junior had four tackles (three solo) in the Huskies' 35-3 win over Fordham.

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• East Carolina sophomore defensive end Derrell Johnson sacked South Carolina quarterback Connor Shaw for a loss of six yards in the Pirates' 56-37 loss against the Gamecocks.

• Maryland's 32-24 win over Miami on Monday night featured contributions from many local players. In addition to Robinson, junior safety Eric Franklin (Archbishop Curley) recorded four tackles (two solo) and broke up one pass, sophomore defensive end David Mackall (Edmondson) assisted on four tackles (including one for a 2-yard loss), and junior defensive tackle A.J. Francis (Gonzaga (D.C.) grad, Severn native) assisted on two tackles.

• Mississippi senior defensive end Wayne Dorsey (Southwestern) assisted on one tackle and broke up a pass in the Rebels' 14-13 loss to BYU.

• North Carolina senior linebacker Zach Brown led North Carolina with six tackles (five solo) in the Tar Heels' 42-10 win over James Madison. Brown had 2.5 tackles for loss, including a sack for a 6-yard loss.

• Rutgers sophomore linebacker Nick DePaola (Hereford) collected one solo tackle in the Scarlet Knights' 48-0 win over North Carolina Central.

• San Jose State senior cornerback Brandon Driver (Parkville) recorded five tackles (four solo) and broke up one pass in the Spartans' 57-3 loss at No. 6 Stanford.

• Temple junior running back Matt Brown (a Baltimore native who graduated from New Jersey's Peddie School) rushed 11 times for 36 yards in the Owls' 42-7 win over Villanova. Brown also returned one punt for 37 yards and one kickoff for 23 yards.

• UNLV freshman defensive back Mike Horsey (Dunbar) assisted on two tackles in the Rebels' 51-17 loss at Wisconsin.

• Utah State senior wide receiver Xavier Martin (Joppatowne) caught a 25-yard pass in the Aggies' 42-38 loss at Auburn.

• UTEP sophomore linebacker Horace Miller (Dunbar) assisted on two tackles, including a sack, in the Miners' 31-24 win over Stony Brook.

• Virginia freshman Darius Jennings (Gilman) stayed busy in the Cavaliers' 40-3 win over William & Mary. The 2010 Baltimore Sun All-Metro Offensive Player of the Year caught four passes for 61 yards, carried the ball once for a 3-yard gain, returned one punt for 27 yards and two kickoffs for 32 yards.

Defensively for U.Va., senior defensive tackle Nick Jenkins (Good Counsel grad, Westminster native) contributed three tackles (one solo).

• Wake Forest junior linebacker Joey Ehrmann (Gilman) made four solo tackles, including one for a 2-yard loss, in the Demon Deacons' 36-29 loss to Syracuse.

U.S. Presswire photo of Tavon Austin by Charles LeClaire / Sept. 4, 2011

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