UCLA's Eric Kendricks named PAC-12 Player of the Week after blowout win over rival USC

November 24, 2014

To the victor go the spoils.

After three straight wins over USC, and following the UCLA Bruins lopsided 38-20 victory over their rival, Bruins' linebacker Eric Kendricks was named the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week for his role in shutting down the Trojans offense this past Saturday.

Running back Nick Wilson of Arizona and punter Drew Riggleman of Arizona were also named as the Conference's offensive and special teams Players of the Week in football.

Kendricks, a senior from Fresno, led UCLA with 14 tackles, a tackle for loss, and a key interception in the Bruins win over USC.  His interception, the third of this season, helped to set up a late second quarter touchdown scoring drive which handed the Bruins a huge momentum lift and a 24-14 halftime lead.  From that point forward, the game became virtually non-competitive.

Kendricks has led or tied for the team tackles lead in all games this season, and now ranks second on the all-time school list for tackles, just eight shy of matching Jerry Robinson’s total of 468 set in 1975-78. He recorded the ninth double-digit tackle effort of the season, one short of the school record, and the 23rd of his career. Kendricks leads the Pac-12 with a total tackle average of 11.6 per game (5th in the nation) and in solo tackles with a mark of 8.1, which ranks first in the nation.

Wilson, a freshman from Fresno, ran through Utah to lead the Wildcats to a 42-10 victory, on the road in Salt Lake City. Wilson carried the ball 20 times for a career-high 218 yards and added three rushing touchdowns (17,75 and 19 yards) to hold off the Utes while Arizona played the second half without its starting quarterback Anu Solomon.

In a three minute span in the fourth quarter, Wilson rushed for 114 yards and two touchdowns on six carries. With Arizona leading 21-10, and pinned at its own 5-yard line, Wilson carried five-straight times as the Wildcats marched 95 yards in just over two minutes on their first possession of the fourth quarter. Wilson’s 75-yard touchdown capped the pivotal drive, which gave UA some breathing room. It was Wilson’s third-straight 100-yard game and his first 200-yard game. The game pushed his season rushing total to 1,085 yards, making him the first Arizona freshman to rush for over 1,000 yards in a single season.

Riggleman, a junior from Tucson, played a key role in Arizona’s 42-10 win over Utah. Riggleman punted seven times for an average of 52.0 yards, including a booming 67-harder that nearly matched his career-long of 70 yards, and downed three punts inside of the 20-yard line. Riggleman’s punts helped Arizona to a five-yard advantage in starting field position.

The Utes went three-and-out three times after Riggleman punts and gained only 183 total yards with no points on the seven drives after he punted. Arizona is second in the Pac-12 in punting and Riggleman’s 46.5-yard punting average currently ranks second-best in school history and is tied for third-best in the nation.

Also nominated for Offensive Player of the Week: Taylor Kelly, QB, ASU; Marcus Mariota, QB, ORE; Redmound Wright, RB, STAN; Brett Hundley, QB, UCLA; Jaydon Mickens, WR, WASH; and Vince Mayle, WR, WSU.

By Staff of TheDailySportsHerald.com and news services

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