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Michigan's Devin Gardner is one of eight quarterbacks named "Stars of the Week" by the Manning Award, the only quarterback award that includes the candidates' bowl performances in its balloting. Gardner made just his second appearance as a quarterback this year and completed 16 of 29 passes for 286 yards and two touchdowns and added two rushing scores, including the game-winner in overtime, against nationally ranked Northwestern.
Fans can now go to the Allstate Sugar Bowl Facebook page to vote for what they think was the best performance from this past weekend. When voting closes on Thursday at 11 a.m. CT, the top vote-getter will be announced as the Manning Award Player of the Week. Click on this link to vote for the Manning Award Player of the Week.
Northwestern's Venric Mark was named to the Paul Hornung Award Weekly Honor Roll for the fourth time this season. Mark had 260 all-purpose yards in a 38-31 overtime loss to Michigan, with 104 yards on 23 carries and a touchdown, three punt returns for 30 yards and four kick returns for 126 yards. The weekly recognition honors versatile, single-game performances throughout the season by FBS football players nationwide. The Paul Hornung Award is granted annually to the most versatile player in major college football.
Fans can show their support for Mark in the online voting for the Paul Hornung Award finalists at www.votepaulhornung.com, powered by Texas Roadhouse. All players on the preseason watch list, as well as players selected on the Weekly Honor Roll and those identified by the Paul Hornung Award Committee are eligible for the fan voting. The fan selections will count as an additional vote in the selection process.
The times and television for the final full weekend of Big Ten football are now set. Big Ten games will be held on Friday, Nov. 23, and Saturday, Nov. 24. Full details appear below:
Friday, Nov. 23
11 a.m. CT/Noon ET
Nebraska at Iowa, ABC
Saturday, Nov. 24
11 a.m. CT/Noon ET
Michigan at Ohio State, ABC
Illinois at Northwestern, BTN
Indiana at Purdue, BTN
2:30 p.m. CT/3:30 p.m. ET
Wisconsin at Penn State, ABC (regional) and ESPN or ESPN2 (outer market)
Michigan State at Minnesota, BTN
Rushers: Eight Big Ten players finished with 100 or more yards on the ground on Saturday, led by the Wisconsin duo of Montee Ball and James White. Ball racked up 198 yards and three touchdowns while White added 161 yards and two scores at Indiana. Other 100-plus yard rushers were Minnesota's Donnell Kirkwood (152 yards, two touchdowns), Penn State's Zach Zwinak (141 yards, one touchdown), the Nebraska pair of Ameer Abdullah (116 yards) and Taylor Martinez (104 yards), Northwestern's Venric Mark (104 yards, one touchdown) and Purdue's Ralph Bolden (102 yards).
Passers: Four Big Ten signal callers threw for more than 200 yards on Saturday, topped by Michigan's Devin Gardner with 286 yards and two touchdowns against Northwestern. Three other quarterbacks surpassed 200 yards in Purdue's Robert Marve (266 yards, two touchdowns), Penn State's Matt McGloin (240 yards, one touchdown) and Indiana's Cameron Coffman (233 yards, two touchdowns).
Receivers: Two conference standouts recorded seven or more catches or 100 or more receiving yards on Saturday and both play for Michigan. The Wolverines' Jeremy Gallon hauled in seven passes for 94 yards while teammate Roy Roundtree compiled 139 yards on five catches in a victory over Northwestern.
Tackles: Fourteen Big Ten defenders registered 10 or more tackles last weekend, topped by Illinois' Mason Monheim with 15 tackles against Purdue. Six more players produced 11 or more stops including the Penn State duo of Glenn Carson and Gerald Hodges with 14 tackles each, Indiana's Mark Murphy with 13 defensive stops, the Iowa pair of Micah Hyde and James Morris with 11 tackles each and Michigan's Thomas Gordon with 11 stops. Seven more conference standouts collected 10 tackles each.
Tackles for Loss: Five conference players notched two or more tackles for loss (TFL) on Saturday, led by four TFLs for Purdue's Kawann Short (one sack). Penn State's Deion Barnes collected three TFLs (one sack) while three standouts produced two TFLs - Indiana's Greg Heban (one sack), Michigan's Kenny Demens and Purdue's Landon Feichter.
Big Ten student-athletes continue to excel both on the field and in the classroom, as 19 conference standouts were named to the 2012 Capital One Academic All-District Football Teams. The conference's honorees are Indiana's Mark Murphy and Adam Replogle, Iowa's Steve Bigach, James Morris and James Vandenberg, Michigan State's Max Bullough and Mike Sadler, Minnesota's John Rabe, Nebraska's Rex Burkhead, Sean Fisher, Jake Long and Spencer Long, Northwestern's Brian Arnfelt and Patrick Ward, Penn State's Brad Bars, Ben Kline, Pete Massaro and John Urschel and Wisconsin's Michael Trotter.
Nebraska and Penn State were two of only four Football Bowl Subdivision institutions to produce four Academic All-District selections. Ten Big Ten players earned Academic All-District laurels for the second straight year in Bigach, Bullough, Burkhead, Fisher, Spencer Long, Replogle, Sadler, Urschel, Vandenberg and Ward. Burkhead and Ward were named first-team Academic All-Americans last season, while Fisher and Sadler were tabbed as second-team honorees. Massaro was a first-team Academic All-American following the 2010 campaign but missed the 2011 season due to injury.
To be eligible for the award, a player must be in at least his second year of athletic eligibility, be a first-team or key performer and carry a cumulative 3.30 grade point average. First-team selections will be added to the national ballot and are eligible for Academic All-America honors to be announced on December 6.
Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints (Purdue) - Threw for 239 yards and two touchdowns on 21-of-27 passing in New Orleans' 28-13 win over Philadelphia.
Owen Daniels, TE, Houston Texans (Wisconsin) - Caught four passes for 62 yards and a touchdown in the Texans' 21-9 win over the Bills.
Lavonte David, LB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Nebraska) - Racked up a team- and season-high 16 tackles, including 14 solo and two for loss, in the Bucs' 42-32 victory over the Raiders.
Eric Decker, WR, Denver Broncos (Minnesota) - Reeled in eight receptions for 99 yards and two touchdowns in the Broncos' 31-23 win over the Bengals.
Brandon Fields, P, Miami Dolphins (Michigan State) - Averaged 53.3 yards on four punts and a long of 60 yards in the Dolphins' 23-20 loss to the Colts.
Larry Foote, LB, Pittsburgh Steelers (Michigan) - Totaled seven tackles, including six solo, in the Steelers' 24-20 defeat of the Giants.
Charles Godfrey, S, Carolina Panthers (Iowa) - Racked up five tackles and a pass deflection in the Panthers' 21-13 victory over the Redskins.
Robbie Gould, K, Chicago Bears (Penn State) - Nailed all three of his field goals and six extra point attempts in the Bears' 51-20 win over the Titans.
Chad Greenway, LB, Minnesota Vikings (Iowa) - Tallied a team-high 13 tackles in the Vikings' 30-20 loss to the Seahawks.
Brian Hartline, WR, Miami Dolphins (Ohio State) - Pulled in eight catches for 107 yards and a touchdown in Miami's 23-20 loss to Indianapolis.
Malcolm Jenkins, S, New Orleans Saints (Ohio State) - Notched a team-leading 13 tackles in the Saints' 28-13 win over the Eagles.
Corey Liuget, DE, San Diego Chargers (Illinois) - Recorded four tackles and a pass deflection in the Chargers' 31-13 defeat of the Chiefs.
Whitney Mercilus, DE, Houston Texans (Illinois) - Notched three tackles, a sack and a forced fumble in the Texans' 21-9 win over the Bills.
Bernard Pollard, S, Baltimore Ravens (Purdue) - Totaled seven tackles in the Ravens' 25-15 victory over the Browns.
Paul Posluszny, LB, Jacksonville Jaguars (Penn State) - Notched eight tackles in the Jaguars' 31-14 loss to the Lions.
J.J. Watt, DE, Houston Texans (Wisconsin) - Tallied five tackles and a sack in the Texans' 21-9 defeat of the Bills.
Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks (Wisconsin) - Threw for 173 yards and three touchdowns on 16- of-24 passing in the Seahawks' 30-20 win over the Vikings.
Iowa's Mike Meyer, Michigan's Brendan Gibbons and Northwestern's Jeff Budzien were named semifinalists for the Lou Groza Award, given annually to the nation's top kicker. Meyer has hit 15-of-18 field goals this season, Gibbons has connected on 13-of-15 attempts while Budzien is 11-for-12 on the year. Meyer is a Groza Award semifinalist for the second straight year. Two Big Ten kickers have claimed the Groza Award - Iowa's Nate Kaeding in 2002 and Ohio State's Mike Nugent in 2004.