CHARLOTTE, N.C. (www.BigSouthSports.com) - Stony Brook quarterback Kyle Essington (Chino Hills, Calif.) has been named the Choice Hotels Big South Football Offensive Player of the Week, while VMI defensive back Byron Allen (Massaponax, Va.) has been selected as Defensive Player of the Week for games played the final week of the regular-season. Gardner-Webb running back J.J. Hubbard (Tampa, Fla.) is the Special Teams Player of the Week and Presbyterian College wide receiver Jeremiah McKie (Simpsonville, S.C.) is The Crons Brand Freshman of the Week.
Essington was 14-of-20 passing for 250 yards and three touchdowns in leading the Seawolves over Liberty for the Big South title and Conference's FCS Playoff berth. He brought Stony Brook back from one deficit and two ties in the victory, and finished the day with no turnovers, 262 yards of offense and a 224.50 pass efficiency rating. With the game tied at 7-7 in the first quarter, Essington connected on a 26-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Norrell to put SBU up for the first time. In the second quarter with Stony Brook trailing 21-17, Essington hit Matt Brevi for a 49-yard touchdown pass to give the Seawolves a three-point advantage. Essington's final TD pass of the day went 14 yards to Brock Jackolski late in the third quarter that broke a 24-24 tie.
Allen, playing in his final game with the Keydets, capped his career with an 11-tackle performance against Gardner-Webb, in addition to a pass break-up and the game-clinching interception. He had four solo stops and seven assisted tackles, and his interception with 1:22 remaining sealed the seven-point win -- snapping GWU's eight-game win streak over the Keydets.
Hubbard, a freshman running back, returned a kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown at VMI to jump start Gardner-Webb's fourth quarter rally against the Keydets. He is the first freshman in Big South history to return a kickoff for a touchdown, and his return cut VMI's lead to 14 points before the Runnin' Bulldogs made it a seven-point game.
McKie caught four passes for a career-high 116 yards and a touchdown in the Blue Hose's win over Charleston Southern. He scored on a career-long 58-yard pass play to give PC a 31-7 lead early in the third quarter. He also caught a 44-yard pass on Presbyterian College's opening drive that set-up the Blue Hose's first TD of the day.
Also nominated for Offensive Player of the Week: Aramis Hillary (Coastal Carolina), Chris Summers (Liberty), Ryan Singer (Presbyterian College), Eric Kordenbrock (VMI).
Also nominated for Defensive Player of the Week: Dexter Holman (Coastal Carolina), Brandon Robinson (Liberty), Dominick Reyes (Stony Brook).
Also nominated for Special Teams Player of the Week: Austin Cain (Coastal Carolina).
Also nominated for Freshman of the Week: Denzell Rice (Coastal Carolina).
2011 Offensive Players of the Week
Sept. 5 - Aramis Hillary, Coastal Carolina
Sept. 12 - Mike Brown, Liberty
Sept. 19 - Malcolm Dixon, Charleston Southern
Sept. 26 - Miguel Maysonet, Stony Brook
Oct. 3 - Sirchauncey Holloway, Liberty
Oct. 10 - Kyle Essington, Stony Brook
Oct. 17 - Mike Brown, Liberty
Oct. 24 - Ricky Rhodes, Gardner-Webb
Oct. 31 - Miguel Maysonet, Stony Brook
Nov. 7 - Eric Kordenbrock, VMI
Nov. 14 - Brock Jackolski, Stony Brook
Nov. 21 - Kyle Essington, Stony Brook
2011 Defensive Players of the Week
Sept. 5 - Paco Varol, Liberty
Sept. 12 - Kevin Fogg, Liberty
Sept. 19 - Will Hunt, Charleston Southern
Sept. 26 - Dan Mulrooney, Stony Brook
Oct. 3 - Marty Patterson, Gardner-Webb
Oct. 10 - Josh Norman, Coastal Carolina
Oct. 17 - Justin Bethel, Presbyterian College & Byron Allen, VMI
Oct. 24 - KaJuan Lee, Liberty
Oct. 31 - Maurice Dickson, Gardner-Webb
Nov. 7 - Josh Norman, Coastal Carolina
Nov. 14 - Philip George, Coastal Carolina
Nov. 21 - Byron Allen, VMI
2011 Special Teams Players of the Week
Sept. 5 - Ricky Rhodes, Gardner-Webb
Sept. 12 - CeeJay Harris, Presbyterian College
Sept. 19 - Justin Bethel, Presbyterian College
Sept. 26 - Wesley Skiffington, Stony Brook
Oct. 3 - Ervin Garner, Liberty
Oct. 10 - Brock Jackolski, Stony Brook
Oct. 17 - Brock Jackolski, Stony Brook
Oct. 24 - Kevin Fogg, Liberty
Oct. 31 - Graham Purvis, Gardner-Webb
Nov. 7 - Kevin Fogg, Liberty
Nov. 14 - Niccolo Mastromatteo, Coastal Carolina
Nov. 21 - J.J. Hubbard, Gardner-Webb
2011 Freshmen of the Week
Sept. 5 - Trever Austin, Gardner-Webb
Sept. 12 - Trever Austin, Gardner-Webb
Sept. 19 - Quinn Backus, Coastal Carolina
Sept. 26 - Demarcus Rouse, Presbyterian College
Oct. 3 - Desmond Rice, Liberty
Oct. 10 - Desmond Rice, Liberty
Oct. 17 - Desmond Rice, Liberty
Oct. 24 - Trever Austin, Gardner-Webb
Oct. 31 - Donelle Williams, Presbyterian College
Nov. 7 - Ivan Toomer, Gardner-Webb
Nov. 14 - Mike Lisi, Stony Brook
Nov. 21 - Jeremiah McKie, Presbyterian College