Athlon hands out the awards from the Week 11 action in the SEC.
Week 11 of the 2016 college football season produced several big performances and memorable moments from the SEC. Alabama easily defeated Mississippi State 51-3, while Florida scored a key win for positioning within the SEC East by knocking off South Carolina 20-7. Georgia upset Auburn 13-7, LSU's ground attack led the way in a 38-10 victory over Arkansas, and Ole Miss true freshman quarterback Shea Patterson guided the Rebels to a 29-28 victory at Texas A&M.
With the second weekend of November games in the books, it’s time to take a look at the best of the best and honor some of the top performances from the SEC. Here’s a look at Athlon Sports’ picks for the offensive, defensive, coordinator, team, freshman and unsung hero from Week 11:
SEC Week 11 Awards
Offensive Player of the Week: Jalen Hurts, QB, Alabama
Hurts ensured Alabama wouldn’t have a post-LSU letdown against Mississippi State. The true freshman completed 28 of 37 throws for 347 yards and four touchdowns and led the team with 100 rushing yards on 11 carries. Hurts is the first player in Alabama history with 300 passing yards and 100 rushing yards in a single contest. Additionally, his 447 total yards ranked third in school history for the most yards in a single game.
Defensive Player of the Week: Charles Harris, DL, Missouri
Harris and the Missouri defensive line dominated the line of scrimmage in Saturday’s win over Vanderbilt. The junior recorded nine tackles (3.5 for a loss), two sacks, two quarterback hurries and one forced fumble in the 26-17 victory.
Coordinator of the Week (Offense): Steve Ensminger, LSU
LSU’s offense rebounded from last week’s disappointing showing against Alabama. The Tigers scored 38 points against Arkansas, recorded 390 yards on the ground and finished with an average of 8.2 yards per play. LSU scored touchdowns on three of its first four drives and posted only one three-and-out.
Coordinator of the Week (Defense): Mel Tucker, Georgia
Auburn entered Saturday’s contest against Georgia averaging 34.8 points and nearly 300 rushing yards per game. However, Tucker and coach Kirby Smart crafted an outstanding gameplan, as the Bulldogs limited the Tigers to just 164 overall yards (3.0 ypp) and seven points. Additionally, Tucker’s defense held Auburn to just 32 yards in the second half and only one of 13 drives in the game extended more than 35 yards.
Freshman of the Week (Offense): Shea Patterson, QB, Ole Miss
With Chad Kelly sidelined for the rest of the year, coach Hugh Freeze decided to pull the redshirt from Patterson and hand the keys to the offense to his talented freshman quarterback. The move paid dividends for the Rebels, as Ole Miss upset Texas A&M 29-28 in College Station on Saturday night. Patterson delivered a standout performance in his first game as the starter, completing 25 of 42 throws for 338 yards and two scores and rushing for 64 yards on 15 carries.
Freshman of the Week (Defense): David Reese, LB, Florida
With starters Jarrad Davis and Alex Anzalone sidelined due to injury, the Gators turned to Reese for his first career start on Saturday. The freshman led all Florida defenders with 11 tackles (0.5 for a loss) and helped the Gators limit South Carolina to just 4.1 yards per play in a 20-7 win.
Team of the Week: Georgia
First-year coach Kirby Smart picked up the biggest SEC win of his tenure on Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs leaned on their defense to slow down Auburn’s high-powered offense, with defensive back Maurice Smith scoring the only touchdown for Georgia on Saturday, while the offense did just enough to score the 13-7 upset.
Unsung Hero of the Week: Maurice Smith, DB, Georgia
Smith recorded the biggest play in Saturday’s win over Auburn. The Alabama transfer intercepted a pass from quarterback Sean White, returning the pick 34 yards for Georgia’s only touchdown in a 13-7 victory over the Tigers. Smith also recorded three tackles and was instrumental in holding Auburn to just 37 passing yards.