Sept. 28, 2009
GREENSBORO, N.C. (theACC.com) – NC State sophomore quarterback Russell Wilson headlines a list of Atlantic Coast Conference Players of the Week after a career performance in a 38-31 comeback win against Pittsburgh, in which the quarterback threw four touchdown passes for the third consecutive game and helped the Wolfpack offense to three unanswered touchdowns late in the game to cap the comeback.
Joining Russell on this week’s list are Virginia Tech’s freshman running back Ryan Williams—who takes in his third Rookie of the Week honor of the 2009 season—junior defensive end Jason Worilds and sophomore offensive tackle Blake DeChristopher. Georgia Tech’s junior center Sean Bedford joins DeChristopher as the Co-Offensive Linemen of the Week and junior strong safety Morgan Burnett is the Defensive Back of the Week. Florida State true-freshman cornerback Greg Reid rounds out the list with his second Player of the Week selection in as many weeks.
OFFENSIVE BACK – Russell Wilson, NC State, QB, So., 5-11, 208, Richmond, Va. (Collegiate)
NC State sophomore quarterback Russell Wilson threw for four touchdowns and totalled 413 total yards—the ninth-highest in school history—in helping the Wolfpack to a 38-31 comeback win against previously unbeaten Pittsburgh. Wilson was 21-of-35 through the air for 322 yards and threw four touchdown passes for the third consecutive game. His team- and career-high 91 rushing yards gave him 413 of NC State’s 530 total yards (78 percent). As the Wolfpack trailed, 31-17, with 4:15 remaining in the third quarter, Wilson engineered three touchdown drives of 45, 83, and 71 yards, including a 33-yard touchdown pass to Jarvis Williams, and a seven-yard strike to George Bryan to tie the game at 31-31. Wilson currently sits second in the ACC and 19th in the nation with an average of 271 yards of total offense per game, ranks second in Division I FBS with 12 touchdown passes, and has thrown an NCAA-record 364 consecutive passes without an interception.
Blake DeChristopher, Virginia Tech, OT, So., 6-5, 303, Midlothian, Va. (Clover Hill)
Virginia Tech sophomore offensive tackle Blake DeChristopher anchored an offensive line that paved the way for a Hokie offense that totaled 370 yards, including 272 on the ground in Virginia Tech’s 31-7 win over then-ninth-ranked Miami. DeChristopher graded out at a team-high 85 percent on 56-of-64 plays and recorded five knockdowns in the win that vaulted Virginia Tech to No. 6 in both the Associated Press and USA Today polls—the highest national ranking for an ACC team this season.
Sean Bedford, Georgia Tech, C, Jr., 6-1, 267, Gainesville, Fla. (Buchholz)
Bedford helped the Georgia Tech offensive line create plenty of space for Yellow Jacket ball carriers, who combined for 317 rushing yards and 406 overall in a 24-7 win against then-18th-ranked North Carolina—a victory that lifted Georgia Tech back into the AP poll at No. 25. Despite mid-game cramps, Bedford and his fellow linemen neutralized a Tar Heel defense that entered the game allowing just 52.3 rushing yards per game and ranked sixth nationally in total defense.
DEFENSIVE LINEMAN – Jason Worilds, Virginia Tech, DE, Jr., 6-2, 240, Carteret, N.J. (Carteret)
Virginia Tech junior defensive end Jason Worilds was active throughout a 31-7 win against ninth-ranked Miami in pressuring Hurricane quarterback Jacory Harris. Worilds had six tackles and was credited with 1.5 quarterback sacks, while adding a forced fumble and two quarterback hurries. The junior helped the Hokie defense limit Miami to just 209 yards of total offense.
DEFENSIVE BACK – Morgan Burnett, Georgia Tech, SS, Jr., 6-1, 210, College Park, Ga. (North Clayton)
Georgia Tech junior strong safety Morgan Burnett was credited with both of the Yellow Jackets’ interceptions in a 24-7 win against then-18th-ranked North Carolina. Burnett’s two interceptions give him three for the season—good for second place in the ACC—and 13 for his career, moving him into a tie for fourth in school history. He also made a team-high six tackles.
SPECIALIST – Greg Reid, Florida State, CB, Fr., 5-9, 175, Valdosta, Ga. (Lowndes)
Florida State true freshman cornerback Greg Reid earned his second Player of the Week accolade in as many weeks. Reid was selected as the Defensive Back of the Week last week, and earned Specialist of the Week for racking up 129 yards, exclusively on returns. Despite a 17-7 loss to unbeaten South Florida, Reid handled all three of the Seminoles’ punt returns for a total of 78 yards—a 26.0 yards per return average—including a 68-yarder in the fourth quarter that led to Florida State’s only touchdown. In his kickoff return role, Reid had three returns with a long return of 36 yards. Additionally, he contributed defensively with a pass break-up from his cornerback position. Although he is sharing the return duties, Reid boasts a team-leading 15.7 yards-per-return average on punts and a 25.8 yards-per-return average on kickoffs, and is the team leader with 103.8 all-purpose yards per game.
ROOKIE – Ryan Williams, Virginia Tech, RB, Fr. 5-9, 205, Manassas, Va. (Stonewall Jackson)
For the second week in a row and third time in the last four, Virginia Tech freshman running back Ryan Williams topped all ACC newcomers with a game-high 150 rushing yards and two touchdowns on a career-high 34 in a 31-7 win against ninth-ranked Miami. Additionally, Williams hauled in two receptions for 40 yards for a total of 190 all-purpose yards. The redshirt-freshman currently ranks sixth in the nation with 123.0 rushing yards per game and is tied for second with eight scores.