Auburn, Alabama Star Players Headline Week 11's SEC Players of the Week

Brian LeighFeatured ColumnistNovember 11, 2013

Nov 9, 2013; Knoxville, TN, USA; Auburn Tigers quarterback Nick Marshall (14) rushes for the end zone against Tennessee Volunteers defensive back Byron Moore (3)  during the first half at Neyland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall needed just seven passes and three completions to win SEC Offensive Player of the Week honors, according to the conference's official website.

The Tigers rolled Tennessee 55-23 at Neyland Stadium Saturday on the strength of 444 rushing yards, and Marshall led the effort with 214 on 14 carries.

That total was the most by any SEC player this season and the third highest of all time for an Auburn QB. He is the first quarterback to surpass 200 rushing yards since Cam Newton during his Heisman Trophy season in 2010.

Like Newton that year, Marshall still has a shot—albeit an unlikely one—at propelling his team to a BCS National Championship. If the Tigers beat Georgia this weekend and Alabama in the Iron Bowl, they would advance the conference championship game with one loss.

Even then, Auburn would still likely need some help, but it would at least have a shot at heading to Pasadena. Either way, Marshall has this team headed for a big stage.

Other players honored by the SEC this week include:

  • Defensive POW: LB C.J. Mosley, Alabama
  • Special Teams POW: RS Chris Davis, Auburn
  • Freshman POW: QB Maty Mauk, Missouri
  • Offensive Line POW: OT Laremy Tunsil, Ole Miss
  • Defensive Line POW: DE Caleb Azubike, Vanderbilt

Marshall's teammate, return specialist Chris Davis, returned a punt 85 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter of the win. It was the first Auburn punt return touchdown since 1970, and Davis' 127 total punt return yards were the most by an SEC player this year.

Nov 9, 2013; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; LSU Tigers tight end Dillon Gordon (85) catches a tipped ball by Alabama Crimson Tide linebacker C.J. Mosley (32) during the third quarter at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Spor

Mosley paced Alabama's impressive defense effort against LSU, especially in the second half, when the Tide stymied the Tigers offense completely. He finished the game with 12 tackles, two pass breakups and 1.5 tackles for loss.

Mauk won freshman of the week with his dominant performance at Kentucky, tying a school record with five touchdown passes in a 48-17 win.

But he wasn't the only freshman honored in Week 11: Ole Miss tackle Laremy Tunsil, a top-10 recruit in the Class of 2013, was recognized for helping the Rebels total 531 yards against Arkansas. He has only allowed one sack this season.

Azubike helped Vanderbilt score a surprisingly easy win over Florida, racking up two sacks that totaled an incredible 32 yards. His constant pressure harried quarterback Tyler Murphy all afternoon and helped lead to three interceptions.

Congrats to all who were recognized!