SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Southern Conference named its football players of the week Monday for all games played Aug. 30 to Sept. 1. Chattanooga wide receiver Bryce Nunnelly was named the Offensive Player of the Week, The Citadel linebacker Noah Dawkins was named the Defensive Player of the Week and Samford placekicker Mitchell Fineran was tabbed Special Teams Player of the Week. The players of the week are selected by the league office.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Bryce Nunnelly, Chattanooga, So., WR, Cleveland, Tenn.
Chattanooga wide receiver Bryce Nunnelly caught seven passes for 161 yards and a touchdown in the Mocs’ season-opening, 34-10 win over Tennessee Tech on Thursday, averaging 23 yards per reception. His 89-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter put Chattanooga ahead to stay after the Golden Eagles had taken their only lead of the game, 7-6. Nunnelly’s 89-yard catch is tied for the fifth-longest in school history and is the Mocs’ longest since a school-record 94-yard reception in 1997.
Other nominees: Lorenzo Ward (The Citadel), Quay Holmes (ETSU), Marquise Irvin (Mercer), Devlin Hodges (Samford), Tyrie Adams (Western Carolina) and Lennox McAfee (Wofford).
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Noah Dawkins, The Citadel, Sr., LB, Lyman, S.C.
Citadel linebacker Noah Dawkins had two interceptions at No. 11/10 Wofford on Saturday, one of which he returned for a touchdown, as the Bulldogs fell just short in their upset bid, 28-21. After the Terriers rushed out to a 21-0 lead, Dawkins got The Citadel’s comeback going with an interception deep in Wofford territory late in the second quarter. After the Bulldogs scored on the ensuing possession to cut it to a two-score game at the half, Dawkins intercepted Wofford’s first pass of the third quarter and returned it 47 yards for a TD to make it a one-possession game. Dawkins also added two tackles in the game, one of which went for a 9-yard loss.
Other nominees: Dylan Weigel (ETSU), LeMarkus Bailey (Mercer), Aaron Atkinson (Samford), Derek Mahaffey (Chattanooga), Jacquez Williams (Western Carolina) and Mason Alstatt (Wofford).
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Mitchell Fineran, Samford, Fr., PK, Fort Valley, Ga.
Samford placekicker Mitchell Fineran had a busy day in his collegiate debut, kicking off eight times for an average of 60.1 yards, making his lone field-goal attempt and going 6-for-6 in extra-point tries in the Bulldogs’ 66-9 win over Shorter on Thursday. The true freshman hit a 32-yard field goal to extend Samford’s lead to 17-0 in the first quarter, and on kickoffs, he produced a pair of touchbacks.
Other nominees: Matthew Campbell (The Citadel), Landon Kunak (ETSU), Matt Shiel (Mercer), Victor Ulmo (Chattanooga), Will Horton (Western Carolina) and Luke Carter (Wofford).