Six Schools Earn First Weekly Football Honors of 2012 Season

Northwestern's Venric Mark returned a punt 82 yards for a touchdown at Syracuse.

Sept. 3, 2012

Offensive Co-Players of the Week
Le’Veon Bell, Michigan State
Jr., RB, Columbus, Ohio/Groveport Madison
• Recorded career-highs with 210 rushing yards and 44 carries, scoring two touchdowns to help Michigan State defeat nationally ranked Boise State on Friday night
• Amassed a career-best 265 all-purpose yards, more than Boise State’s total offensive yards (206) for the game
• Scored the Spartans’ only touchdowns of the game, including the game-winner midway through the fourth quarter
• Records his first Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week selection and third overall honor, having earned two Freshman of the Week awards during the 2010 season
• Last Michigan State Offensive Player of the Week: Kirk Cousins (Oct. 24, 2011)

Taylor Martinez, Nebraska
Jr., QB, Corona, Calif./Centennial
• Threw for a career-high 354 yards and tied a career best with five touchdown strikes to lead the Huskers to an opening-day victory over Southern Miss
• Completed 26 of 34 passes (76.5 percent) and became the sixth Nebraska quarterback to throw for more than 4,000 career yards
• Guided Nebraska to 632 yards of total offense, the most in fifth-year coach Bo Pelini’s tenure
• Wins his second career Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week award
• Last Nebraska Offensive Player of the Week: Taylor Martinez (Oct. 10, 2011)

Defensive Player of the Week
Derrick Wells, Minnesota
So., DB, Lehigh Acres, Fla./Lehigh
• Tied for the team lead with eight tackles and added two interceptions to help Minnesota to a road win at UNLV on Thursday night
• Intercepted his first pass midway through the fourth quarter to set up Minnesota’s go-ahead field goal
• Picked off his second pass in the third overtime, allowing Minnesota to kick the game-winning field goal
• Claims his first career Defensive Player of the Week honor
• Last Minnesota Defensive Player of the Week: Kim Royston (Nov. 28, 2011)



Special Teams Co-Players of the Week
Mike Meyer, Iowa
Jr., PK, Dubuque, Iowa/Wahlert
• Booted four field goals, tying a career best, against Northern Illinois, accounting for 12 points in the Hawkeyes’ 18-17 victory over the Huskies
• Converted on field goals from 22, 29, 34 and 50 yards, with the 50-yarder coming with 9:30 remaining in the fourth quarter to cut the NIU lead to one possession
• Wins his second career Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week honor
• Last Iowa Special Teams Player of the Week: Mike Meyer (Nov. 8, 2010)

Venric Mark, Northwestern
Jr., PR/KR, Tomball, Texas/St. Pius X
• Scored Northwestern’s first touchdown in a 42-41 win over Syracuse with an 82-yard punt return in the opening quarter
• Totaled 134 punt return yards, breaking a 21-year-old single-game school record, and collected 49 kickoff return yards, making him NU’s all-time kickoff return yardage leader with 1,513
• Matched a career high with 281 all-purpose yards, including the first touchdown catch of his career
• Wins his second Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week honor
• Last Northwestern Special Teams Player of the Week: Venric Mark (Nov. 29, 2010)

Freshman of the Week
Frankie Williams, Purdue
DB, Tampa, Fla./Coral Gables
• Led the Purdue defense with six tackles, including one for loss, and a pass breakup in Purdue’s 48-6 win over Eastern Kentucky
• Was part of a Purdue defense that held EKU to 85 passing yards on the day
• Wins his first career weekly award
• Last Purdue Freshman of the Week: Raheem Mostert (Nov. 7, 2011)