DALLAS (FWAA) Each week during the 2021 season, we will highlight the notable performances of first-year players and head coaches leading up to the selection of our annual Freshman All-America Team and the Steve Spurrier First-Year Coach of the Year Award presented by Chris Doering Mortgage. Here are the top performances from Week 9, the weekend of Oct. 30:
FIRST-YEAR PLAYERS: THE FRESH FOUR
Andrel Anthony, WR, Michigan (6-2, 185, East Lansing, Mich.): 6 receptions, 155 yards, 2 TD
Anthony was spectacular in Michigan's 37-33 loss to rival Michigan State. Perhaps the most incredible part of the true freshman's performance was its element of surprise Anthony had not a single career reception to his name prior to Saturday. Of course, also impressive were his two scores, the first a 93-yard catch-and-run and the second, a Randy Moss-like snag over the head and outstretched hands of a Spartan defender. Anthony and the Wolverines will attempt to get back in the win column next week against Indiana.
TreVeyon Henderson, RB, Ohio State (5-10, 215, Hopewell, Va.): 28 carries, 152 yards, 1 TD; 1 reception, 7 yards
Henderson continued to establish himself as one of the top running backs in the country Saturday, assisting Ohio State in a 33-24 win over division foe Penn State. The true freshman was kept in check by the Nittany Lion front in the first half before he broke off a 68-yard run and scored two snaps later to put Ohio State ahead for good. The Buckeye rush attack will be back in action this Saturday on the road at Nebraska.
Miley Keene, QB, UCF (5-11, 180, Chandler, Ariz.): 15/21, 229 yards, 5 TD, 1 INT
Keene's career-high five touchdowns led UCF to a dominant 49-7 win at Temple Saturday. The true freshman was aggressive and accurate over the middle of the field, most namely on a 46-yard touchdown strike to Ryan O'Keefe. Keene will look to take another step forward in his development in head coach Gus Malzahn's offense against lowly Tulane this Saturday.
Caleb Williams, QB, Oklahoma (6-1, 210, Washington, D.C.): 23/30, 402 yards, 6 TD; 5 rushes, 3 yards
The explosive Oklahoma offense of yore appears to have returned under the leadership and talents of Williams, who boosted the Sooners over Texas Tech, 52-21. The young gun responded to last week's rough showing at Kansas with a diamond, carving up the Red Raider secondary. The true freshman will take this coming Saturday off before what will likely be top-15 Big 12 matchup at Baylor next weekend.
STEVE SPURRIER FIRST-YEAR COACHES
Bryan Harsin, Auburn: Harsin's Tigers looked incredibly strong for the second straight week, this time in a 31-20 win over No. 10 Ole Miss. Auburn kept the Rebels out of the end zone in the second half, surrendering only a third quarter field goal. Bo Nix was impressive at home, finishing 22-of-30 passing for 276 yards and one touchdown, adding another score on the ground. Tank Bigsby was true to his name with 140 yards rushing and a touchdown on 23 attempts.
Gus Malzahn, UCF: Malzahn's Knights stole the show in Philadelphia with a 49-7 rout of Temple. Freshman Miley Keene more than stepped up for UCF, 15-of-21 for 229 yards, five touchdowns, and one interception. Workhorse Isaiah Bowser added 89 yards rushing and a score on 19 carries. The Knight defense limited the Owls to 197 yards of total offense and forced three turnovers.
Founded in 1941, the Football Writers Association of America consists of journalists, broadcasters, publicists, photographers and key executives in all areas of college football. The FWAA works to govern media access and gameday operations while presenting awards and honors, including an annual All-America team. For more information about the FWAA and its programs and initiatives, contact Executive Director Steve Richardson at 214-870-6516 or email@example.com.
2021 Freshman Focus
Weekend of Sept. 4
Weekend of Sept. 11
Weekend of Sept. 18
Weekend of Sept. 25
Weekend of Oct. 2
Weekend of Oct. 9
Weekend of Oct. 16
Weekend of Oct. 23
Weekend of Oct. 30
Weekend of Nov. 6
Weekend of Nov. 13
Weekend of Nov. 20
Weekend of Nov. 27