Typically when the Pac-12 Conference announces its Player of the Week honors, three players -- an offensive, defensive, and special teams standout -- are named. After seeing the star-making performance on both sides of the ball by UCLA linebacker/running back Myles Jack this week however, the Pac-12 could have gotten away with naming just two.
Jack, a true freshman from Washington, already had proven this season that he was one of the top playmaking linebackers in the nation this year due to his superior speed and knack for the big play. Blessed with the quickness to match up with tight ends, backs, or even wideouts in pass coverage, or to provide the Bruins with another speedy pass rusher on the edge, Jack has had his share of impact plays prior to Saturday's showdown with Arizona. But against the Wildcats, Jack took his game to another level.
Playing on the offensive side of the ball for the first time this season, Jack led UCLA to a 31-26 win, as he rushed for 120 yards on six carries, including a 66-yard dash for a touchdown to extend UCLA’s lead late in the fourth quarter. Jack showcased his above-average speed on the play, as he turned the corner and then outran the Wildcats' secondary down the sidelines for the score.
Jack’s rushing total is tied for 10th on the all-time school freshman list, while the 66-yard scamper is the fourth longest by a freshman in program history. He also played outstanding on the defensive end as well, adding eight tackles, a tackle for loss, two pass breakups, and a fumble recovery in the end zone. For his efforts, Jack was given Pac-12 offensive Player of the Week honors.
Linebacker Shayne Skov of Stanford and wide receiver/punt returner Nelson Agholor of USC also were named Pac-12 defensive and special teams football Players of the Week, respectively.
Skov, a senior from Mexico, led a Stanford defense that stifled No. 2-ranked Oregon en route to a 26-20 win at Stanford Stadium. He collected a team-leading nine tackles, including two tackles for loss, and added two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, two quarterback hurries, and a pass breakup as the Cardinal limited the high-powered Duck rushing attack to just 62 total yards. Both of Skov’s forced fumbles ended Oregon scoring chances, including a forced fumble and fumble recovery inside the five-yard line as the Ducks were looking to pull within seven.
Agholor, a sophomore, turned in a record-setting day as the Trojan’s punt returner in a 62-28 win at California on Saturday. He returned punts of 75 and 93 yards for touchdowns to tie a Pac-12 record for punts returned for touchdowns in a single game, while the 93-yard return tied for second-longest in program history and 168 total punt return yards broke USC’s single-game mark.
Other nominees included quarterback Keith Price of Washington and defensive tackle Will Sutton of Arizona State.
By Staff of The Daily Sports Herald and news services