Pittsburgh, Oklahoma and LSU also picke up weekly awards
The quarterback who rearranged the Big 12 wasn’t even in the lineup until the last five games.
As Baylor and Texas learned, Clint Chelf is in some ways the nation’s most unpredictable player.
Two weeks ago, Chelf, considered less of a running threat than teammate J.W. Walsh, rushed for 95 yards and two touchdowns to defeat Texas in Austin.
But Saturday brought the biggest surprise as Chelf, not his Baylor counterpart, was the quarterback of the most explosive and efficient offense. Chelf completed 19 of 25 passes for 370 yards with three touchdowns to earn Athlon Sports National Player of the Week honors.
In defeating Baylor and Texas in the last two weeks, Chelf completed better than 70 percent of his passes and put Oklahoma State into the lead for the Fiesta Bowl.
Athlon Sports Week 13 National Awards
National Player of the Week: Clint Chelf, Oklahoma State
The Cowboys’ offense has evolved through the course of the season, most notably with return to Clint Chelf as starting quarterback. Even though he’d shown marked improvement, an explosion like the one against Baylor was a shock. Chelf completed his first 11 passes as Oklahoma State built a commanding lead in the third quarter. Chelf, who has started the last five games, finished 19 of 25 for 370 yards with four total touchdowns.
National Defensive Player of the Week: Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh
There were a handful of standout defensive performances in the ACC in Week 13, with Donald narrowly beating Florida State’s Timmy Jernigan and North Carolina’s Kareem Martin for this week’s honor. With bowl eligibility on the line, Donald and Pittsburgh’s defense held Syracuse to 16 points and 307 yards on 67 plays. The Orange recorded 148 rushing yards, which was 73 below their weekly average. Donald once again wrecked havoc against the offensive line, recording nine tackles (3.5 tackles for a loss) and two quarterback hurries. Donald also blocked an extra point after Syracuse’s first touchdown.
National Freshman of the Week: Trevor Knight, Oklahoma
Like Oklahoma State, the rival Sooners started the season with one quarterback, switched and now returned to the opening day starter. Oklahoma went back to redshirt freshman Trevor Knight this week out of necessity with Blake Bell out following a concussion. Knight responded by completing 14 of 20 passes for 141 yards with a touchdown and an interception in a 41-31 road win over Kansas State. Knight added 82 rushing yards and a touchdown on 14 carries.
Coordinator of the Week: John Chavis, LSU
Chavis and his LSU defense did the impossible — shut down Johnny Manziel and the Texas A&M offense. The Aggies’ 299 total yards were 279 below their season average and 187 below their previous season low (486 in the opener against Rice). Manziel completed only 16-of-41 passes for 224 yards — the fewest in any of his 10 starts this season — with one touchdown and two interceptions. Texas A&M also had its streak of 13 straight games with at least 40 points snapped. Not bad for a defense that had to replace eight starters from last season.
Athlon Sports Week 13 Conference Awards
Offense: Andre Williams, Boston College
Defense: Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh
Freshman: Jameis Winston, Florida State
Coordinator: Blake Anderson, North Carolina
Offense: Clint Chelf, Oklahoma State
Defense: Jeremiah George, Iowa State
Freshman: Trevor Knight, Oklahoma
Coordinator: Glenn Spencer, Oklahoma State
Offense: Jeremy Langford and Connor Cook, Michigan State
Defense: Ryan Shazier, Ohio State
Freshman: Michael Rose, Nebraska
Coordinator: Dave Aranda, Wisconsin
Offense: Ka’Deem Carey, Arizona
Defense: Chris Young, Arizona State
Freshman: Scooby Wright, Arizona
Coordinator: Jeff Casteel, Arizona
Offense: Terrence Magee, LSU
Defense: Chase Garnham, Vanderbilt
Freshman: Reshard Robinson and Tre’Davious White, LSU
Coordinator: John Chavis, LSU