Oct. 15, 2007
GREENSBORO – Georgia Tech junior offensive tackle Andrew Gardner earned ACC Offensive Lineman of the Week honors for the second time this season and senior running back Tashard Choice was named the ACC Offensive Back of the Week, the league office announced today.
Gardner and the Yellow Jacket offensive line, which has not allowed a sack over the last three games, opened holes for Choice in Tech’s 17-14 win at Miami on Saturday.
Choice erupted for career bests of 204 yards and 37 carries against the Hurricanes – Georgia Tech’s third consecutive win over Miami. The Riverdale (Ga.) native also had one reception for 13 yards.
Gardner, North Carolina outside linebacker Durell Mapp and WakeForest red shirt freshman running back Josh Adams all earned their second honors of the year in the weekly Atlantic Coast Conference Football Players of the Week Awards. Gardner had been previously honored on Sept. 4 for his play against Notre Dame.
Choice, the ACC’s leading rusher, earned ACC player of the week honors for the first time along with Virginia Tech linebacker Brett Warren, and WakeForest kicker/punter Sam Swank.
Five Georgia Tech players have earned ACC player of the week honors six times this season. Senior center Kevin Tuminello (Oct. 1), senior kicker Travis Bell (Sept. 4) and freshman running back Jonathan Dwyer (Sept. 10) are all previous winners.
OFFENSIVE BACK—Tashard Choice, Georgia Tech, Running Back, 6-1, 205, RS-Sr, Riverdale, Ga.
In his team’s 17-14 win at Miami on Saturday, Choice racked up 204 yards rushing on 37 carries. He has now run for 100 yards or more in three straight games, giving him five 100-yard performances this year and 15 for his career with the Yellow Jackets. Choice currently places sixth on the Georgia Tech all-time career rushing list, and leads the ACC with 840 yards on the ground in 2007.
OFFENSIVE LINEMAN—Andrew Gardner, Georgia Tech, Tackle, 6-6, 298, RS-Jr., Tyrone, Ga.
At Miami on Saturday, Gardner had three knockdown blocks, helping to keep the Hurricane defensive line at bay in the Yellow Jackets’ 17-14 win. Gardner threw a key block on Georgia Tech’s second touchdown of the day, springing quarterback Taylor Bennett for a three-yard run into the endzone to give the Jackets a 14-7 lead. With Gardner blocking for him, Tech running back Tashard Choice ran for 204 yards, the highest total for any running back in the league this year.
DEFENSIVE LINEMAN–Brett Warren, Virginia Tech, Inside Linebacker, 6-1, 238, RS-Jr., Clifton, Va.
Starting for the first time in his career at Duke on Saturday, Warren compiled 11 total tackles, including three for loss and one quarterback sack. In the 43-14 win over the Blue Devils, the Virginia Tech defense allowed only 194 total yards and forced three turnovers, including an interception that Warren returned 24 yards for the Hokies.
DEFENSIVE BACK–Durell Mapp, North Carolina, Outside Linebacker, 6-2, 235, Sr., Burlington, N.C.
In the Tar Heels’ close loss to No. 7 South Carolina on Saturday, Mapp registered a game-high 14 tackles, including 10 solo stops. He added 1.5 tackles for loss, a pass breakup and one forced fumble as the North Carolina defense shut out the Gamecocks in the second half, giving up only 62 yards over the final 30 minutes of play. Mapp currently ranks third in the ACC with an average of 10.9 tackles per game.
SPECIALIST–Sam Swank, WakeForest, Placekicker, 6-2, 206, RS-Jr., Jacksonville Beach, Fla.
Swank, the ACC’s third leading scorer a year ago, booted a season-best 48-yard field goal with 1:40 to play to give the Demon Deacons a 24-14 lead over Florida State on Thursday night. Swank also connected on all three of his PATs and punted seven times for 285 yards, averaging 40.7 yards per kick. For the year, Swank is 5 for 5 on field goal attempts and is tied atop the league rankings for field goal percentage.
ROOKIE–Josh Adams, WakeForest, Running Back, 6-0, 180, RS-Fr., Cary, N.C.
In Thursday night’s nationally-televised 24-21 win over FloridaState, Adams carried 18 times for a career-best 140 rushing yards and a touchdown. He also caught a team-high six passes for 29 yards and a score, giving him 169 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns on the night. Adams’ 83-yard scoring run in the second quarter was the longest rush of his career and the longest by any WakeForest player since 1968. With an average of 72.8 rushing yards per game, Adams currently leads the Deacons and ranks seventh among all ACC running backs.