Week 9 B1G Players of the Week
What a week it was for freshmen in the B1G.
Saquon Barkley and Markell Jones gave their respective fans a reason to get excited about the future. Rodney Smith came up with a monster play that almost led Minnesota to an upset of No. 15 Michigan.
And that doesn’t even include the performances from the two top freshmen in Week 9.
Here’s how the B1G awards shook out:
Offensive Player of the Week: David Blough, Purdue QB
Defensive Player of the Week: Anthony Brown, Purdue CB
Special Teams Player of the Week: William Likely, Maryland KR
Freshman of the Week: Jabrill Peppers, Michigan S
Blough led Purdue to its first B1G home win of the Darrell Hazell era with his 356 total yards of offense and five touchdowns. Blough’s 83-yard touchdown pass to DeAngelo Yancey was the longest by a Purdue player in three years. The freshman became the first Boilermaker to take home a B1G Offensive Player of the Week honor since Robert Marve in 2012.
His teammate also made a little Purdue history. Brown became the first Boilermaker in 18 years to record three interceptions in a game. The senior was the first B1G player to do that in six years. He helped Purdue to a season-high four interceptions in Saturday’s 55-45 win against Nebraska.
Likely continued to dazzle on special teams. For the second time in his career, he returned a kick 100-plus yards for a score. The Maryland junior claimed his first weekly honor since he set the B1G return yardage record on Sept. 5.
Peppers also stole the show on special teams, and just about everywhere else. Michigan’s first two touchdown drives were set up by his 40-plus yard returns. On defense, the freshman had three tackles — one of which was a game-saving trip of Mitch Leidner in the fourth quarter — and two pass breakups. On offense, he recorded his first career touchdown running the wildcat and stabilized the Wolverines when starting quarterback Jake Rudock went down. It marked the second time this season Peppers earned a Freshman of the Week honor.