Horton, a senior from Oakland, led a spirited defensive effort by Washington State in the Cougars 10-7 upset win over USC in the first Conference game of season.
The Trojans passing attack looked particularly inept throughout the game, as a combination of conservative play calls, inconsistency from USC's platooning quarterbacks, and good Washington State defense limited USC to a mere seven points Saturday night.
Horton certainly did his part, stepping in front of a USC pass and returning it 70 yards for a touchdown to even the score at 7-7 just before halftime. He later collected his second interception with less than a minute remaining to seal the victory for Washington State, ending the game with two interceptions for 75 return yards and two tackles for a loss of 12 yards.
Horton also drew the assignment of covering USC All-American receiver Marquise Lee, and limited him to 27 yards on seven catches.
Thomas, a junior from Los Angeles, continued his highlight reel ways with 11 carries for a game-high 124 yards rushing and three touchdowns in the Duck’s 59-10 road win over Virginia on Saturday. He had touchdown runs of one, forty, and eight yards, and reeled in one catch for another 28 yards. Thomas is averaging 8.7 yards per carry and is tied for 20th in the nation in rushing yards per game (126.0 ypg).
Smith, a senior place-kicker from Philadelphia, set a school kicking record with 16 points to help lead Arizona past UNLV 58-13 in Las Vegas.
Other nominees included quarterbacks Travis Wilson of Utah, Taylor Kelly of Arizona State, Sean Mannion of Oregon State, and Jared Goff of Cal; running backs Ka’Deem Carey of Arizona, Tre Madden of USC and Tyler Gaffney of Stanford; and wide receiver Paul Richardson of Colorado.
Also nominated for defensive player of the week honors were linebackers Jake Fischer of Arizona, Grandville Taylor of Arizona State, and Hardy Nickerson of California; safeties Jared Bell of Colorado, Ed Reynolds, of Stanford and Dion Bailey of USC; defensive end Tony Washington of Oregon and defensive tackle Tenny Palepoi of Utah.
By Staff of The Daily Sports Herald and news services