B1G Players of Week 3
The Big Ten had it easy this week.
No, I’m not making a strength of schedule joke. I’m talking about the award winners.
Every B1G player who earned weekly hardware was a slam dunk decision. The receiver who scored three touchdowns, the linebacker who made 19 tackles, the kicker who drilled a 57-yard game-winner should’ve been and were locks.
Here’s who earned B1G Player of the Week honors:
Offensive Player: Aaron Burbridge, WR (Michigan State)
Defensive Player: Anthony Walker, LB (Northwestern)
Special Teams: Marshall Koehn, K (Iowa)
Co-Freshman of the Week: Saquon Barkley, RB (Penn State)
Co-Freshman of the Week: Jonathan Crawford, S (Indiana)
Burbridge had a career-high three touchdowns and 156 receiving yards — including arguably the catch of the year — to fuel the Spartans’ 35-21 victory over Air Force. The MSU wideout has surpassed 100 yards receiving in each of the first three games this season and currently ranks No. 1 in the Big Ten. He was the first Spartan to earn Offensive Player of the Week honors since Jeremy Langford in Oct. 2013.
On the defensive side, Walker continued to shred opposing offenses. He racked up a career-high 19 tackles in No. 17 Northwestern’s 19-10 win at Duke. The sophomore ranks second in the Big Ten in tackles this season for a Wildcat defense that is sixth in the country in total defense.
Koehn generated plenty of late-night excitement for his game-winning 57-yard field goal to knock off Pitt. He made a 43-yard field goal and even had a 64-yard punt in his only attempt. It marked Koehn’s first weekly B1G honor.
Barkley and Crawford shined on their respective sides of the ball in their third collegiate game. Barkley went off for a career-high 195 rushing yards and two scores, one of which came on a nifty juke in the Rutgers’ red zone. It was the most rushing yards by a Lions true freshman since 1998, and it also gave Barkley his second straight B1G Freshman of the Week honor.
Crawford’s heroics came on the defensive side, where he picked off Brandon Doughty twice to help Indiana lock up a 38-35 victory. Both scores led to IU touchdowns and gave the program its first 3-0 start in five years.