On paper, college football’s Week 2 slate wasn’t as enticing as the schedule from the opening weekend. However, as usual, another Saturday of action didn’t disappoint. There were plenty of intriguing games early, with Pitt-Penn State coming down to the wire, as well as East Carolina and Central Michigan knocking off Power 5 opponents. And there was no shortage of intrigue in the night games with a close battle in the Holy War between BYU and Utah, Tennessee knocking off Virginia Tech in Bristol, and Arkansas’ overtime victory over TCU.
With the second weekend of games in the books, it’s time to take a look at the best of the best and honor some of the top performances. Here’s a look at Athlon Sports’ picks for the offensive, defensive, coordinator, team, freshman and unsung hero from Week 2:
College Football Week 2 Awards
Offensive Player of the Week: Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville
Jackson continued his hot start to the season with a monster performance against Syracuse. The sophomore completed 20 of 39 throws for 411 yards and one score, including a 72-yard bomb to James Quick on the first play of the game. Jackson also rushed for 199 yards and four touchdowns. Jackson’s 610 total yards set a new school record, while he’s also the first quarterback in FBS history to pass for 400 yards and rush for 175 yards in the same game.
Defensive Player of the Week: Brooks Ellis, LB, Arkansas
Shutting down TCU’s high-powered attack wasn’t going to be easy, but the Razorbacks did just enough to pull off the 41-38 victory in Fort Worth. Ellis was a big reason why Arkansas’ defense pitched a shutout in the first half and left with the win, as the senior recorded 13 stops (three for a loss) and posted a 47-yard pick-six in the second quarter.
Coordinator of the Week: Chip Lindsey, Offensive Coordinator, Arizona State
Lindsey was one of the offseason’s top coordinator hires, and he’s wasted no time making an impact in Tempe. The Sun Devils defeated Texas Tech 68-55 on Saturday night, with the offense averaging a healthy 7.2 yards per play and accumulating 301 total yards on the ground. Lindsey eased in new starting quarterback Manny Wilkins (28 of 37 for 351 yards), while the combination of Kalen Ballage and Demario Richard on the ground was too much for the Red Raiders to handle.
Unsung Hero of the Week: Donnel Pumphrey, RB, San Diego State
Pumphrey carried San Diego State to a 45-40 victory over California, rushing for 281 yards and three scores on 29 carries. Pumphrey’s 281 yards on Saturday night pushed his career mark to 4,651, which passed Marshall Faulk for the most rushing yards in school history. Through two weeks of the season, Pumphrey leads all players with 379 rushing yards.
Team of the Week: Arkansas
The Razorbacks took another step forward under Bret Bielema’s watch on Saturday, as Arkansas edged TCU in an overtime thriller 41-38 to move to 2-0 this year. A balanced attack on offense carried the Razorbacks, with quarterback Austin Allen clinching the victory with a five-yard run in overtime. The defense made enough timely plays to slow the Horned Frogs’ offense, including a second quarter pick-six by linebacker Brooks Ellis.
Freshman of the Week (Offense): Shane Buechele, QB, Texas
Buechele followed a standout performance against Notre Dame in the opener with a sharp effort in Week 2. The true freshman completed 22 of 27 passes for 244 yards and four scores in a 41-7 rout over UTEP. He also added 34 rushing yards on 11 carries.
Freshman of the Week (Defense): Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan
Gary helped Michigan turn in another dominant defensive effort, as the Wolverines limited UCF to 4.9 yards per play and just 14 points. Gary was active around the line of scrimmage, as he ranked second on the team with six tackles. Additionally, Gary accumulated 2.5 tackles for a loss.