Courtesy of the Big South Conference
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Liberty wide receiver Chris Summers (Jacksonville, Fla.) has been named the Choice Hotels Big South Football Offensive Player of the Week, while VMI linebacker A.J. Gross (Waldorf, Md.) has been selected as the Defensive Player of the Week for games played the fifth week of the 2010 season. In addition, Presbyterian College punter Patrick Morgano (Greenville, S.C.) is the Special Teams Player of the Week, while Blue Hose cornerback Jimmy Pruitt (Orlando, Fla.) is The Crons Brand Freshman of the Week.
Summers caught eight passes for 132 yards and three touchdowns in Liberty’s win over Savannah State, becoming just the seventh player in Big South history with three touchdown receptions in a game. He also is the first Liberty player to accomplish this feat since 2001. Summers scored on plays from nine, 30 and 17 yards out, and averaged 16.5 yards per reception. In addition, seven of his eight catches went for first downs, while his first two touchdown grabs gave Liberty 14-point margins both times. Summers now leads all FCS receivers with eight touchdown receptions this season.
Gross finished with nine tackles (four solo and five assisted), a team season-high three tackles-for-loss (minus-3 yards) and forced a fumble in VMI’s victory over Presbyterian College. One of his TFLs forced a third-and-long, while another stop came on third down and led to a punt. Gross helped the VMI defense limit PC to 205 yards of offense, 10 first downs and just 1-of-12 on third down opportunities.
Morgano averaged 43.3 yards on seven punts at VMI, including one kick from his own 20-yard line that traveled 64 yards and was not returned. The 64-yarder is the fifth-longest punt in Big South football history, and was one of his four kicks of 46 yards or longer. Morgano nearly finished with three punts inside the Keydets’ 20-yard line, as two punts fell at the one before trickling into the end zone. VMI, which entered the game averaging 19.1 yards on punt returns, managed just three punt returns for 18 yards (6.0 average) on the day.
Pruitt recorded a career-high nine tackles at VMI, finishing with three solo hits and six assisted stops. Pruitt, who entered the game with just six tackles in his previous four games, also recorded two pass break-ups against the Keydets that would have been first down plays.
Also nominated for Offensive Player of the Week: Brandon Whitley (Coastal Carolina) and Mario Scott (VMI).
Also nominated for Defensive Player of the Week: Andrae Jacobs (Coastal Carolina), Kevin Fogg (Liberty) and Derek Brown (Presbyterian College).
Also nominated for Special Teams Player of the Week: Ben Erdman (Coastal Carolina).
Also nominated for Freshman of the Week: Scott Hyland (Liberty).