Racers' Anderson and Honeycutt win OVC weekly awards

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Malik Honeycutt - Photo by Dave Winder

OVC Player of the Week Awards

CO-OFFENSIVE

Drew Anderson, QB 6-4, 221, R-Sr. Orinda, Calif. Murray State

Anderson shook off a bad opening half, that saw him throw three interceptions and lose a fumble, to toss four touchdowns and help Murray State overcome a 31-0 deficit to top No. 19 Southeast Missouri 40-38. The transfer from Buffalo finished the game 37-of-63 for 412 yards and four touchdowns while adding 40 yards on the ground. Anderson, who was 18-of-28 passing in the second half, tossed a two-yard score right before halftime to put Murray State on the board. He added a nine-yard touchdown with 5:15 to play in the third and after his defense intercepted SEMO's next pass, tossed a touchdown with 3:55 to play to trim the margin to seven points. His final touchdown of the game came with 1:42 to play and gave MSU a 34-31 lead.

CO-OFFENSIVE

Isaiah Johnson, RB 6-1, 215, Sr. Clarksville, Tenn. Eastern Illinois

Johnson carried the ball 23 times for 187 yards (8.1 ypc) and a trio of touchdowns in Eastern Illinois' 52-21 victory over Austin Peay. The senior also caught a team-high six passes for 26 yards and had 12 return yards to finish the game with 225 all-purpose yards. Johnson had touchdown runs of 10 and 20-yards in the first quarter to put the Panthers on top 14-0 as the team would build a 35-0 advantage. He added a four-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter. Johnson had a long run of 76 yards on the day, a second quarter scamper that setup an EIU touchdown a play later. The 187 rushing yards were the third-most by an OVC player this season.

Others Nominated: Zerrick Cooper, Jacksonville State; Shawn McColley, Tennessee State; Andrew Goldsmith, Tennessee Tech.

DEFENSIVE

Justin Swift, OLB 6-0, 220, Jr. Memphis, Tenn. Southeast Missouri

Swift scored a pair of defensive touchdowns (a 60-yard fumble and 76-yard interception) on back-to-back possessions in Southeast Missouri's game at Murray State. Swift also added eight tackles and assisted on a sack in the game. Late in the first quarter, the junior scooped up a MSU fumble and returned it 66 yards for a touchdown to put his team ahead 17-0. It marked the fourth-longest fumble return in school history. A little over two minutes later, he intercepted a pass and ran 76 yards for a score to put the Redhawks up 24-0. That interception return for a score was the second-longest in school history. Swift was part of a defense that forced five turnovers in a game, before losing by two points on a kickoff return for a score.

Others Nominated: Jaison Williams, Austin Peay; Josh Price, Eastern Illinois; Steven Crowder, Eastern Kentucky; Jalen Choice, Jacksonville State; Kendrick Catis, Murray State; Jeremiah Caine, Tennessee State; James Gilleylen, UT Martin.

SPECIALIST

Mailk Honeycutt, WR/RS 6-0, 174, Jr. Tallahassee, Fla. Murray State

With 20 seconds remaining and his team trailing by four, Honeycutt returned a kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown to lift Murray State to a 40-38 come-from-behind win over No. 19 Southeast Missouri. The junior picked up the squib kick, and after running into a swarm of defenders, changed course, found a hole and took the ball to pay dirt with just three seconds remaining. The play was the No. 1 Play of the Day on SportsCenter. The Racers have fallen behind 31-0 late in the second quarter, only to storm back and take a 34-31 lead with 1:42 to play. But SEMO responded and went ahead 38-34 with 20 seconds remaining before Honeycutt's heroics. It was his only kick return of the day; he also caught three passes for 21 yards, including a nine-yard touchdown with 5:15 to play in the third quarter that cut the Redhawks margin to 31-17.

Others Nominated: Nick Bruno, Eastern Illinois; Jake Reynolds, Southeast Missouri; Nick Madonia, Tennessee Tech.

NEWCOMER

Drew Anderson, QB 6-4, 221, R-Sr. Orinda, Calif. Murray State

Anderson shook off a bad opening half, that saw him throw three interceptions and lose a fumble, to toss four touchdowns and help Murray State overcome a 31-0 deficit to top No. 19 Southeast Missouri 40-38. The transfer from Buffalo finished the game 37-of-63 for 412 yards and four touchdowns while adding 40 yards on the ground. Anderson, who was 18-of-28 passing in the second half, tossed a two-yard score right before halftime to put Murray State on the board. He added a nine-yard touchdown with 5:15 to play in the third and after his defense intercepted SEMO's next pass, tossed a touchdown with 3:55 to play to trim the margin to seven points. His final touchdown of the game came with 1:42 to play and gave MSU a 34-31 lead.

Others Nominated: Johnathan Brantley, Eastern Illinois; Parker McKinney, Eastern Kentucky; Zerrick Cooper, Jacksonville State; Shawn McColley, Tennessee State; Joe Hudson, UT Martin.

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