Carey has 842 rushing yards through seven games for the 4-3 Wildcats. He also has 222 receiving yards and 12 total touchdowns on the year. The sophomore had a career-high 179 rushing yards on 29 carries Saturday in a 52-17 win against the Washington Huskies. He is averaging 5.4 yards per carry this year, after rushing for 425 yards as a freshman last season.
Maxwell Award semifinalists will be announced next week, with the list being cut to three players on Nov. 19.
The award was named after football player, coach and writer Robert W. Maxwell of Swarthmore College.
The honor has traditionally been given to quarterbacks or running backs. Stanford's Andrew Luck won the Maxwell Award in 2011, and the last time a quarterback didn't win it was in 2002, when Penn State running back Larry Johnson took home the honor.