Seth Russell (Baylor), Zack Sanchez (Oklahoma) and Shelton Gibson (West Virginia) were named Big 12 Football Players of the Week by a panel of media that covers the Conference. Russell (offense) and Sanchez (defense) were honored for the second time while Gibson (special teams) picked up his first award.
Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week
Seth Russell, Baylor, QB, Jr, Garland, Texas
Quarterback Seth Russell accounted for six touchdowns and 540 total yards in No. 2 Baylor’s 62-38 win over West Virginia. He posted the second game in program history with 300-plus passing yards (380) and 100-plus rushing yards (160), joining Robert Griffin III who reached the feat in 2011. Russell opened the scoring with a 16-yard scamper, then threw three TD strikes to Corey Coleman (2, 11 and 33 yards) and two to Jay Lee (36 and 52 yards) to help BU take a 48-24 lead over the Mountaineers heading into the fourth quarter. The junior’s 540 yards of total offense are second in the league to Texas Tech’s Baker Mayfield (572) in a season-game of 2015. Russell's 380 passing yards are a season-high and his 160 rushing yards were the second-most in program history by a Baylor quarterback (RG3 had 217 vs. Washington State in 2008). Russell was named the Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week for his performance.
Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week
Zack Sanchez, Oklahoma, CB, Jr, Fort Worth, Texas
Zack Sanchez intercepted two passes and returned one of them for a touchdown in No. 19 Oklahoma’s 55-0 win at K-State. Sanchez and the Oklahoma defense held the Wildcats to 110 total yards (fewest by an OU opponent on their home field since 2005) and just seven first downs. It was OU's first shutout against a Big 12 opponent since 2010 and was the first time K-State was held scoreless at home since 1991. It was also the third fewest yards the Sooners have allowed in the 17-year Bob Stoops era. Sanchez, who also posted a tackle (no Sooner had more than four stops), recorded his first interception of the game with 6:38 left in the second quarter, which led to a touchdown and a 35-0 lead. On K-State's opening possession of the second half, the junior cornerback stepped in front of the intended receiver for his second interception and then weaved 38 yards through traffic for the score. It was his third career pick-six, tying an OU record.
Big 12 Special Teams Player of the Week
Shelton Gibson, West Virginia, KR, So, Cleveland, Ohio
Shelton Gibson returned five kickoffs for 185 yards, including a 100-yarder in the fourth quarter at Baylor. He also had kick returns of 22, 22, 26 and 15 yards for an average of 37 yards. Gibson has posted 11 returns of 20 yards or more this season. He is the ninth Mountaineer to have a 100-yard kickoff return, last accomplished by Mario Alford against Alabama on Aug. 30, 2014. Gibson’s kick return for a TD was the first since Alford went 94 yards for a score on Oct. 4 2014. Gibson posted a game-high 277 all-purpose yards, the most by a Mountaineer since Alford had 311 against Iowa State in 2013. The 277 yards rank No. 14 on WVU’s single-game all-purpose yards list.