Bryce Petty (Baylor), James Sims (Kansas), Justin Gilbert (Oklahoma State), Jack Cantele (K-State) and Jalen Saunders (Oklahoma) were named Big 12 Football Players of the Week by a panel of media that cover the Conference. Gilbert (defense) was honored for the second consecutive week and fourth time in his career. Saunders (co-special teams) was recognized for the second time in his career while Petty (co-offense), Sims (co-offense) and Cantele (co-special teams) picked up their first weekly award.
Big 12 Co-Offensive Players of the Week
Bryce Petty, Baylor, QB, Jr, Midlothian, Texas
Bryce Petty completed 17-of-31 passes for 335 yards and three touchdowns in Baylor’s 63-34 win over Texas Tech. He also rushed for two more scores from six yards and one-yard out. The junior helped the Baylor offense rack up 675 yards of offense, which is the sixth time this year the Bears have eclipsed 600 yards. His eight-game streak with a rushing and passing TD is tied for third-longest nationally since 1998 (Tim Tebow – 14, Marcus Mariota – 9, Colin Kaepernick – 8).
James Sims, Kansas, HB, Sr, Irving, Texas
James Sims set a career-high with 211 rushing yards in Kansas’ 31-19 win over West Virginia. He logged the most rushing yards by a Kansas player since Reggie Duncan ran for 227 yards against Texas Tech during the 2001 season. The 211 yards was the 15th-best rushing effort in Kansas history and the second most by a Big 12 player in 2013. Sims scored three touchdowns in guiding the Jayhawks to their first Big 12 win in more than three seasons. He now has 34 career rushing touchdowns and is seven away from tying the Kansas all-time record of 41 set by June Henley from 1993-96.
Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week
Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State, CB, Sr, Huntsville, Texas
Justin Gilbert intercepted two passes and returned one 43 yards for a touchdown to help Oklahoma State to a 38-13 win over Texas. His interception return for a touchdown in the second quarter marked his second interception return for a score of the season. He also had a pick-six at Iowa State. It was the eighth non-offensive touchdown of his career. Gilbert’s two interceptions give him 11 for his career.
Big 12 Special Teams Co-Players of the Week
Jack Cantele, K-State, PK, So, Wichita, Kan.
Jack Cantele drilled a game-winning 41-yard field goal with :03 remaining to give K-State a 33-31 win over TCU. The kick was K-State’s first last-second game-winner since 1980 and capped a perfect 4-for-4 day for Cantele. The sophomore also connected on attempts of 31, 34 and 23 yards. Cantele improved to 11-for-13 on the season and set a single-game career high in field goals made.
Jalen Saunders, Oklahoma, PR, Sr, Elk Grove, Calif.
With the Sooners trailing 10-3 against Iowa State, Jalen Saunders registered a 91-yard punt return touchdown to spark Oklahoma to 45 unanswered points and a 48-10 win. Saunders now has two career punt return TDs for OU. He ranks second in the Big 12 in punt return average (13.5).