McNeese sweeps Southland Conference Players of the Week - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

McNeese sweeps Southland Conference Players of the Week

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by Matthew Bonnette

 

LAKE CHARLES – McNeese State swept the Southland Conference football players of the week awards after the Cowboys' 59-28 Southland Conference opening win at Central Arkansas on Saturday.

 

Senior running back Marcus Wiltz was named the league's offensive player of the week while senior safety Ryan Bronson and senior kicker Ryan Rome the defensive and special teams players of the week, respectively, announced by the league office on Monday.

 

Wiltz was also named the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) national running back of the week and Bronson the Beyond Sports Network national defensive player of the week.

 

On Saturday, Wiltz ran for a career-high 181 yards on 17 carries and a touchdown in snapping the Bears' 13-game home win streak. The senior from Cecilia, La. (Cecilia H.S.), averaged 10.6 yards per carry. It was his third 100-yard rushing game this season. He added two receptions for 42 yards and a score and totaled a career-best 223 all-purpose yards. In six games this season, Wiltz has 674 yards and five touchdowns on 95 carries and is averaging 112.3 rushing yards per game and 7.1 yards per carry.

 

Bronson set a school record with a 98-yard interception return for a touchdown that helped ignite a school-record 35-point second quarter in the win over Central Arkansas. The senior free safety from Jasper, Texas (Jasper H.S.), recorded eight tackles and had two pass breakups in the contest as well. For the season, Bronson ranks fifth on the team with 21 tackles to go along with two interceptions, a tackle for loss and three pass breakups.

 

Rome connected on all eight of his PATs against Central Arkansas and hit his only field goal try of the game from a season-high 39 yards to finish the game with 11 points.  It is the second time this season the senior from Destrahan, La. (Destrahan H.S.), has scored 10 or more points in a game. His season high was 12 at in the season-opening victory at South Florida. Rome leads the Cowboys with 45 points this season. He has made 30 of 33 PATs and five of his six field goal tries this season.

 

Also on Monday, McNeese moved up two spots in the Sports Network Top 25 poll to No. 9 and three spots to No. 11 in the FCS Coaches polls.

 

North Dakota State continues to top both polls while Sam Houston State, McNeese's Oct. 19 Homecoming opponent, is ranked second in the Sports Network and No. 3 in the FCS Coaches poll.  Rounding out the top 10 in the Sports Network poll is Sam Houston State, Towson, Northern Iowa, Eastern Illinois, Eastern Washington, Montana State, Coastal Carolina, McNeese State and Fordham.  Central Arkansas fell from 14th to 20th.

 

In the coaches poll, Towson is ranked second followed by Sam Houston State, Eastern Illinois, Northern Iowa, Coastal Carolina, Montana State, Eastern Washington, Fordham and Montana to round out the top 10.

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