Week 5 of the 2017 college football season produced several big performances and memorable moments from the SEC. The weekend slate featured Auburn's easy win over Mississippi State, Georgia's dominant victory at Tennessee and Alabama's 66-3 destruction against Ole Miss. Additionally, Texas A&M, Arkansas and Florida picked up key wins at home, and LSU was upset by Troy in Baton Rouge.
With the fifth weekend of the 2017 season 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 5:
SEC Week 5 College Football Awards
Offensive Player of the Week: Jarrett Stidham, QB, Auburn
Stidham and Auburn’s offense seems to be finding its rhythm as the team approaches the heart of SEC play. After losing 14-6 versus Clemson in Week 2, the Tigers have averaged 41.3 points over their last three contests. Stidham continues to progress within coordinator Chip Lindsey’s attack, as he passed for 264 yards and two touchdowns on 13 completions against Mississippi State on Saturday night. Stidham misfired on just three passes (13 of 16) and connected on four passes of 40 yards or more.
Defensive Player of the Week: Otaro Alaka, LB, Texas A&M
Alaka was a big reason why Texas A&M’s defense turned in a dominant effort at the line of scrimmage against South Carolina. He recorded nine tackles (seven solo stops) and two sacks. Five of Alaka’s seven tackles went for a loss.
Coordinator of the Week (Offense): Brian Daboll, Alabama
Daboll earns offensive coordinator of the week honors by Athlon Sports for the second week in a row. Alabama’s offensive performance against Ole Miss was nearly flawless. The Crimson Tide recorded 613 total yards (8.2 yards per play), scored eight touchdowns and punted only twice.
Coordinator of the Week (Defense): Kevin Steele, Auburn
Auburn’s defense turned in another standout effort on Saturday night. The Tigers limited Mississippi State to just 10 points, 351 total yards and limited quarterback Nick Fitzgerald to 13 completions on 33 attempts. Steele’s group forced two turnovers, two sacks and generated seven tackles for a loss. Auburn has yet to allow an opponent to score more than 14 points so far this year.
Freshman of the Week (Offense): Malik Davis, RB, Florida
Florida’s ground attack led the way in Saturday’s win against Vanderbilt. The Gators recorded 218 yards and five rushing scores, with Davis accounting for 124 yards and two touchdowns. The freshman averaged 7.3 yards per rush on 17 attempts.
Freshman of the Week (Defense): Nick Coe, DL, Auburn
Auburn’s defense dominated the line of scrimmage in Saturday night’s 49-10 victory over Mississippi State. Coe – a redshirt freshman – contributed to the effort in the trenches, as he recorded six stops (two solo) and four quarterback hurries.
Team of the Week: Georgia
Through five weeks, it’s clear the path to the SEC East title runs through Athens. Coach Kirby Smart’s team has showed marked improvement from his 2016 debut and capped the first month of the season with a 41-0 victory over Tennessee on Saturday. The Bulldogs jumped out to a 10-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back. Freshman quarterback Jake Fromm was steady once again, completing 7 of 15 throws for 84 yards. He also added two scores on the ground. Georgia’s ground attack recorded 294 yards on 55 attempts, while the defense limited Tennessee to just 142 yards (2.7 per play) and forced four turnovers.
Unsung Hero of the Week: J.R. Reed, DB, Georgia
Reed stuffed the defensive stat sheet in Saturday’s win over Tennessee. The Tulsa transfer recorded three tackles (one for a loss), recovered a fumble and picked off one pass.