C-USA Players Of The Week: Green, Strozier & Monroe
By Veair Green
So C-USA can’t top last weekend’s exciting games, right? Well, they did as four of the six games were decided by less than six points. The last play decided two games and another outcome remained in doubt until 10 seconds left. This conference may not get the hype, but C-USA is one of the most thrilling and nail-biting divisions with outstanding individual performances. Speaking of which, who were Football.com's Conference USA Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week?
Shane Carden, QB, ECU: 41/55, 480 passing yards, 1 TD vs. Tulane
Cody Green, QB, Tulsa: 14/17, 226 passing yards, 3 total TDs vs. UTEP
Justin Hardy, WR, ECU: 17 rec., 230 receiving yards vs. Tulane
Jordan Howard, RB, UAB: 20 carries, 159 rushing yards; 40 yards on game-winning drive vs. FIU
Jordan Leslie WR, UTEP: 4 rec, 102 receiving yards, 1 TD vs. Tulsa; third straight 100-yard game
Lairamie Lee, DB, North Texas, 1 INT, 1 TD vs. MTSU
Derrick Strozier, CB, Tulane: 8 tackles, 2 pass breakups, 1 INT, 1 TD vs. ECU
Darion Monroe, S, Tulane: 10 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 sack vs. ECU
Kevin Byard, S, MTSU: 17 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 pass breakup vs. North Texas
Mitchell Osborne, LB, Tulsa: 8 tackles, 3 pass breakups, 1 blocked FG vs. UTEP
Offensive Player Of The Week
I have to go with the guy with my last name. Seriously, Tulsa needed to win this game and Green delivered. His numbers weren't as eye-popping as those of Carden or Hardy, but substance beats style this week. The defending conference champs have only one conference win and another loss would have been devastating. Green was efficient through the air and his offense sustained long drives to put this game out of reach on the road. The signal caller also got plenty of help from his running back, Trey Watts, and receiver Thomas Roberson. It was tough not to give this to Hardy, who had a monster game but no “W."
Defensive Player Of The Week
Two teammates will share the honor this week. Strozier and Monroe dominated this game from the secondary and did everything except cook the pre-game meal. Don’t tell these guys defensive backs don’t get physical as they totaled 18 tackles. It was like they were trying to out-do each other in a good way. Strozier’s pick-six was the play of the game. Shane Carden and ECU were about to score when Strozier returned an interception 98 yards for a touchdown; talk about bending without breaking. Monroe filled the alley all day long, making plays behind the line and scrimmage. Despite Hardy’s 17 catches, none of them were touchdowns. Hats off to Strozier and Monroe, who were playmakers in the triple-overtime thriller.