Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - No, Fordham isn't eligible for the Patriot League title or its automatic bid into the FCS playoffs this season. But the Rams are doing everything they can to earn an at-large bid.
Saturday proved to be the best case heard (or seen) yet as the Rams downed then-No. 13 Lehigh to remain unbeaten. Junior quarterback Michael Nebrich didn't get as much recognition in the preseason as the guy who lines up behind him at the running back position in Carlton Koonce, but the tables are turning for Nebrich, who spotlights the Week 6 national players of the week.
Nebrich, Towson's Terrance West, Montana's Anthony Goodwin, Yale's Cole Champion, Montana State's Shawn Johnson and James Madison's Gage Steele have been named The Sports Network FCS National Players of the Week for all Week 6 games ending Oct. 5.
CO-OFFENSIVE PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Michael Nebrich, Fordham, QB, Jr., 6-1, 205, Burke, Va.
Nebrich was once again stellar on Saturday, leading his 6-0 Rams to a 52-34 win over Lehigh. Nebrich completed 26-of-36 pass attempts for a career-high 384 yards and four touchdowns. He added 56 yards and a touchdown on the ground to round out his impressive performance. He now owns a streak of three straight games with at least three touchdown passes and has three 300-yard games this season. Nebrich also leads the nation in completion percentage at 73.5 percent.
Terrance West, Towson, RB, Jr., 5-11, 223, Baltimore, Md.
What is it with West versus New Hampshire? The junior back has torched the Wildcats three times in his collegiate career, and this past Saturday's 44-28 Towson win was certainly no exception. West carried the ball 28 times for 238 yards - his highest yardage total this season - and three touchdowns. West now has 15 rushing touchdowns this season and a total of 59 career scores, which ranks fifth in CAA Football history. West moved into second in Towson's program history with 3,226 career rushing yards.
CO-DEFENSIVE PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Anthony Goodwin, Montana, CB, Sr., 6-1, 180, Murrieta, Calif.
Goodwin's impact was felt not in the number of tackles he had, but against Portland State's passing game. The junior recorded seven pass deflections against the Vikings - the most by any FCS player this season - and had two interceptions for good measure, both of which led to Montana touchdowns. His first interception came in the first quarter of the 55-27 Big Sky rout, while his second came in the third quarter. Goodwin added three tackles in the win.
Cole Champion, Yale, DB, So., 5-11, 183, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
The big picture here is that Yale, an Ivy League program, defeated Top 25 Cal Poly, a Big Sky team, in the first-ever meeting between the two conferences. But the Bulldogs' Champion was a huge part of the victorious equation. He led all players with 14 tackles, and had a fumble recovery and two interceptions. Champion was part of a defense that held the Mustangs scoreless and to 37 total yards in the second half. The sophomore totaled 23 yards in interception returns.
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Shawn Johnson, Montana State, RB, Jr., 5-9, 175, Bakersfield, Calif.
After scoring a rushing touchdown on the team's first drive of the game, the tailback Johnson responded to a Northern Arizona pick-six with a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in Montana State's 36-7, Homecoming Day victory over the then-No. 15-ranked Lumberjacks. Johnson's 100-yard return was the program's first for a touchdown since the 2008 season, and the third for 100 yards in school history. The junior added 54 yards on punt returns and 92 rushing yards for an all-purpose total of 246 yards.
FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK
Gage Steele, James Madison, LB, R-Fr., 6-1, 230, Front Royal, Va.
When it comes to James Madison linebackers, the first name that typically comes to mind is senior Stephon Robertson's. But Steele broke free against Albany with an 18-tackle effort - the highest single-game total in the CAA this season. Steele recorded 13 solo stops and a sack in JMU's 40-13 win. Steele and the Dukes held the Great Danes' fierce rushing attack to a mere 81 yards, and 5-for-19 third-down efficiency.