Every week in the Big Ten, there are outstanding young men playing football for our entertainment, and so we at OTE feel that it is only right to recognize the best and the brightest of these. Here now, the week 10 winners, in both Iowa and non-Iowa divisions:
Offensive Players of the Week (non-Iowa division): Chris Evans and Karan Higdon, Michigan Running Backs
391 rushing yards on 29 attempts (13.5 ypc), plus 4 rushing touchdowns. That’s what Evans and Higdon did to Minnesota on Saturday. Also, only one of the touchdowns was under 60 yards (a 5 yard run by Higdon); the other three went 60, 67, and 77 to the house.
Honorable mentions go out to Gus Edwards of Rutgers (109 yards rushing and the Knights’ lone receiving touchdown), Brian Lewerke (33/56, 400 passing yards, 2 TD) and Felton Davis III (12 for 181 and 1 TD) of Michigan State, and Justin Jackson The Ball Carrier of Northwestern (31 for 154 and 1 TD, also moved into 6th place on the all time B1G rushing list).
Offensive Player of the Week (Iowa division): Nathan Stanley, QB
Some of the statline for Stanley doesn’t look terribly impressive (20-31, 226 yards), but it’s the back half that makes him Iowa’s OPOTW this week (5 TD, 0 INT).
Defensive Players of the Week: Josh Jackson (Iowa DB) and Khaleke Hudson (Michigan DB)
Jackson nabbed three of Iowa’s four INTs against the Buckeyes, and also tacked on 3 solo tackles for good measure. Hudson recorded 13 tackles against the Gophers, including 11 solo tackles, 6.5(!) TFL, and 2 sacks.
Honorable mentions go out to Khari Willis of Michigan State (11 tackles and 1 sack [by a safety]), Tegray Scales (12 tackles, 7 solo, 1 sack, 2.5 TFL, 1 INT) and Chase Dutra (15 tackles, 12 solo) of Indiana, Ja’Whaun Bentley of Purdue (12 tackles, 7 solo, 2.5 TFL), and Kiy Hester of Rutgers, Amani Hooker of Iowa, and Marcus Newby of Nebraska for their pick sixes.
Special Teams Player of the Week (non-Iowa division): Matt Coghlin, Michigan State K
Walk off winners get all the attention.
The MNW Memorial Punter Honorable Mention of the Week goes to Ryan Santoso of Minnesota, who managed a 48 yard punting average on 8 punts with neither a touchback or a punt inside the 20 among them.
Special Teams Player of the Week (Iowa division): Colten Rastetter, Punter
Highlights of the many different ways Rastetter contributed on fake punts in this game are surprisingly hard to come by, so just watch the first half of this clip.
Rastetter also had a 7 yard run and averaged 39 yards on his two punts of the day.
Honorable mentions go to QB Nathan Stanley, for having a longer punt in the game than his own punter (47 on Stanley’s only punt, while Rastetter had a long of 42), and Miguel Recinos for being perfect on both of his field goals and all seven of his extra point attempts.
Outside the Empire Clip of the Week: Northern Arizona’s QB Ejected for Targeting
We call that a good block where we are from... pic.twitter.com/KtdNHQ2jka— NAU Football (@NAU_Football) November 4, 2017
If you haven’t seen this (and really, it’s been blowing up on the internet since it happened, how could you not see this?), here’s the basic gist: NAU runs a reverse where their QB throws a somewhat questionable block on a linebacker. Targeting is called and confirmed, so Case Cookus (the NAU QB in question) gets tossed midway through the first quarter. Anger (if you’re Cookus) and hilarity (literally everyone else) ensues.