ESPN’s college football extraordinaire, Bill Connelly, takes a unique approach to his “most important players” ranking.

We know what to expect from stars on contenders—Alabama’s Bryce Young, Ohio State’s CJ Stroud, etc.—so Connelly focuses on the swing players and the relative unknowns. On Thursday, he offered up a list of 25 players who “could define the season with either moments or long spells of greatness.”

Utah quarterback Cameron Rising was high on that list. Connelly has the fifth-year junior ranked No. 5, listed as a quarterback with a “potential game-changing leap in them.” Here’s what he wrote on Rising:

Utah was 1-2 and off the national radar when Rising, a Texas transfer, started his first game last season. The Utes won nine of their next 10 and took their first Pac-12 title as Rising finished the season sixth in Total QBR.

In 352 dropbacks, Rising suffered only five interceptions and six sacks. He was accurate, mistake-free and ridiculously dangerous with his legs (9.0 yards per scramble). Can he maintain this level of form with a top-10 spotlight on him this fall and with a line that lost a pair of all-conference performers? And can he and his receivers produce a few more big plays and easy points? A pair of affirmative answers could make the Utes a top-five team.

The Utes will open the season ranked eighth in the AFCA Coaches Poll—the preseason AP poll comes out next week—and in The Swamp against a Florida Gators squad that commands national attention. A signature performance from Rising could kick off a special season for both the quarterback and the team.

“Cam means so much to our football team,” head coach Kyle Whittingham said at Pac-12 Media Day last month. “Off the field he’s the leader of the leaders, the alpha dog of our team, really sets the standard. You couldn’t ask for a better leader. He’s one of the best leaders I’ve ever been around.”

Utah is hoping he can lead it to the College Football Playoff.