Posted: 12:48 p.m. Monday, Sept. 2, 2013
By Bryan M. Vance
Week 1 of MACtion didn't go so swell. Only five of the 13 teams won, and three of those had to come back against FCS level opponents. Dri Archer got hurt, Kirk Herbstreit trolled Rocket nation by putting his curse on Toledo when he picked them to upset Florida, and more than one MAC team was embarrassed...no, annihilated.
But let's not focus on the negatives. The MAC announced its weekly Players of The Week for both divisions for Week 1. Here's how they stand.
Offensive Player of The Week: William Houston, RB, Bowling Green — Houston managed just 29 yards on 10 carries Thursday, but three of those resulted in touchdowns. The giant freshman was used as a battering ram against Tulsa, and it worked. Bowling Green plugged him in on the goal line and let him bulldoze his way to the endzone. Not a bad gameplan, and not a bad debut for the frosh.
Defensive Player of The Week: Khalil Mack, LB, Buffalo — Urban Meyer was trolling UB fans early and often by running up the score. But in the end it was Khalil Mack who trolled OSU fans. Mack was nothing short of dominate. He has a game-high nine tackles, 2.5 sacks, and a pick-6. Let's just say if scouts had any doubt of his abilities heading into the game, his domination over the offensive line of the No. 2 team in the country should do away with a lot of those.
Special Teams Player of The Week: Ryan Burbrink, PR, Bowling Green — The sophomore only accumulated 76 punt return yards Thurdsay, with 67 of those coming from one return. But the fact that he ran ti back for a touchdown is what gets him the nod here.
Offensive Player of The Week, Jordan Lynch, QB, Northern Illinois — No surprises here. Lynch is clearly one of (if not) the best player in the MAC, and he showed why Saturday. He propelled the Huskies to a win over Iowa, totaling 331 yards of offense and three TDs by himself. He marched the team down the field with just minutes to go and helped seal the victory over the B1G. Iowa was NIU's toughest non-conference game, and it's over. Lynch played miserably against them a year ago, but showed the year of experience has made him better.
Defensive Player of The Week, Donald Celiscar, DB, Western Michigan — While Michigan State's offense may be in the middle of an identity crisis, Donald Celiscar didn't help them much. He was lockdown, and a key reason why the Spartans manged just 166 yards through the air. Celiscar led the game in tackles with 10, and managed two pass breakups as well.
Special Teams Player of The Week, Mathew Sims, K, Northern Illinois — Giving the kickers some early love. Mathew Sims was a key reason NIU and Lynch were able to pull out the come-from-behind victory in Iowa City Saturday. With four seconds left in the game he nailed a 36-yard game-winning field goal that sent the Huskies home in glory. Sims is no stranger to clutch kicking (just ask Ohio fans) but he's become one of the more consistent kickers in the MAC. He nailed three kicks Saturday, increasing his consecutive field goals made to seven, dating back to last season.