Non-AQ Players of the Week

Here they are, the players of the week for all five non-AQ conferences:

Conference USA

Offense: UAB QB Bryan Ellis. Came off the bench in the second quarter and threw for 360 yards and three touchdowns to lead UAB to a 34-33 come-from-behind win over Troy. Ellis led a 99-yard drive in the final 1:09 of the game, capping off the drive with a 44-yard touchdown pass to Jackie Williams. His performance helped the Blazers overcome a 23-0 lead for the biggest comeback in school history.

Defense: UCF DE Darius Nall. Led UCF with nine tackles, including three for loss and two sacks, plus a pass break-up and a quarterback hurry in UCF’s 24-10 win at Buffalo. He became just the sixth defensive lineman to lead UCF in tackles for a game under George O’Leary.

Special teams: Memphis P Tom Hornsey; Southern Miss DB Deron Wilson. Hornsey kicked a career-high 10 punts in the game, averaging 41.7 yards per punt. He had a career-long 63-yard punt in the fourth quarter and had two inside the 20 in the win over Middle Tennessee. Wilson recovered a blocked punt and went seven yards for a touchdown late in the second quarter of the Golden Eagles’ 31-16 win over Kansas on Friday night.


East Division

Offense: Temple RB Bernard Pierce. Ran for 169 yards and scored three touchdowns in a 30-16 win over Connecticut. Pierce moved up to No. 8 on Temple’s career rushing list and now has 1,662 rushing yards.

Defense: Bowling Green LB Dwayne Woods. Was second on the team with eight tackles, including one tackle for loss, two pass break-ups and one interception return for a touchdown in a 44-28 win over Marshall.

Special teams: Ohio P Paul Hershey. Had three 50-plus yard punts in a loss to Ohio State and dropped two inside the 20-yard line.

West Division

Offense: Central Michigan RB Paris Cotton. Ran for a career-high 209 yards and three touchdowns in a 52-14 win at Eastern Michigan. He became the first player to go over 200 yards at the school since 2004.

Defense: Toledo DB Desmond Marrow. Had 10 tackles and two interceptions, including one he returned 15 yards for a touchdown in a win over Western Michigan.

Special teams: Northern Illinois P Josh Wilber. Averaged 49.0 yards on five punts in 28-22 loss at Illinois. Wilber had three punts of over 50 yards with punts of 51, 56 and 55 yards, with all three of those kicks pinning the Illini inside their 12-yard line.

Mountain West

Offense: San Diego State RB Ronnie Hillman and TCU QB Andy Dalton. Hillman rushed for 228 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries in a 27-24 loss at Missouri. He became the first Aztec player to run for over 200 yards in a game in seven years, while also setting a new MWC freshman single-game rushing record.

Dalton had for 293 yard of total offense and two touchdowns in TCU’s 45-10 win over Baylor. Dalton’s 91.3 completion percentage is a MWC record and is tied for the highest mark by an FBS passer with a minimum of 20 attempts since 2004.

Defense: Utah DB Lamar Chapman. Had a team-high eight tackles, including seven solo stops, two tackles for loss and one sack in Utah’s 56-14 victory at New Mexico.

Special Teams: Utah WR/PR Shaky Smithson. Returned four punts for 140 yards, including a 73-yard touchdown. Smithson topped the 100-yard mark and returned a punt for a touchdown for the second straight game, averaged 35.0 yards per return.

Sun Belt

Offense: Arkansas State QB Ryan Aplin, Troy QB Corey Robinson. Aplin recorded 318 yards of total offense and had two touchdowns in a 34-20 victory over ULM. He led ASU on four scoring drives that covered at least 70 yards.

Robinson became the third quarterback in school history, and the first freshman, to pass for more than 400 yards in a game by going 26-of-44 for 404 yards and two touchdowns in a loss to against UAB. He has now attempted 113 consecutive passes without an interception.

Defense: FIU DB Anthony Gaitor. Gaitor gave FIU a 20-6 lead over Texas A&M in the third quarter when he returned an interception 54 yards for a touchdown. He also forced a fumble when he sacked Johnson in the first quarter in the game FIU ultimately lost.

Special teams: Middle Tennessee P Josh Davis. Punted four times for a school record 59.8-yard average, including a 78-yarder, the third longest punt in school history. Three of his punts were downed inside the 20-yard line.


Offense: Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick. Had 329 yards of total offense and five touchdowns in a 52-31 win over No. 24 California on Friday night.

Defense: Idaho DE Aaron Lavarias. Had four tackles, including two sacks, and a forced fumble in Idaho's 30-7 win over UNLV.

Special teams: Idaho K Trey Farquhar. Made all three of his field goal attempts and was 3-for-3 in extra points in the win against UNLV. He also had seven kickoffs that went into the end zone.