Week 9 College Football Team of the Week: J.T. Tuimoloau Flashes Brilliance for Ohio State

The Week 9 College Football Team of the Week awards the top performances from the ninth week of FBS action across the nation.

The Week 9 College Football Team of the Week is here as the college football schedule featured terrific action all throughout the day. A wild day in the ACC saw historic performances, both bad and good, and the weekend ended with a bang on the West Coast.

Week 9 College Football Team of the Week | First Team

It’s important to note that the PFN Week 9 College Football Team of the Week awards players based on their impact in their respective games and is not necessarily based on total statistical output.

The strength of competition is accounted for, as is the situation — both time of the game and score. These individual awards are also solely based on a player’s ability on Saturday and do not look into their future stock or NFL draft prospects.

Quarterback: Drake Maye, North Carolina

On a wacky day for the ACC, the future at quarterback had one of the brightest outings of his career. It took a bit of time, but once the Tar Heels got rolling, there was no stopping Drake Maye and their offense as they ran away with a 42-24 victory over Pittsburgh.

Maye finished the terrific showing by completing 34-of-44 passes for 388 yards and five touchdowns. With another five-touchdown performance, Maye has now tied the ACC record for most games with five or more touchdown passes in a single season — doing so five times — in just eight games.

A special talent, Maye showcased what makes him a potential hot commodity for the 2024 NFL Draft in a dominant second half. As it stands now, Maye would be just the third quarterback in the last decade to average at least 300 yards passing and 50 yards rushing per game, as he also toted the rock 14 times for 61 yards against Pitt.

Running Back: La’Damian Webb, South Alabama

In a rock ’em, sock ’em slugfest in inclement weather from Jonesboro, La’Damian Webb and South Alabama emerged victorious. The gameplan certainly shifted with the weather to Webb’s strength: his hard-nosed between-the-tackles rushing style.

And was it ever a strength as Webb racked up 162 yards and three touchdowns on 28 carries against the Red Wolves. Webb opened and closed the scoring in this one, including two touchdown runs from a yard out and another from three yards out in a convincing manner.

Running Back: Zach Charbonnet, UCLA

If you stayed up late on the East Coast, you were treated to a dominant performance by one of college football’s most dominant running backs. Cruising to victory over Stanford, Zach Charbonnet led his UCLA Bruins squad to triumph over the Cardinal, keeping up in the Pac-12 race in the process.

Charbonnet was the bellcow for the Bruins, dictating the pace with a three-touchdown performance and 198 yards on the ground. Making it all more impressive, Charbonnet also led UCLA in receiving with five catches for 61 yards before his day was done.

They rode him when it mattered most and Charbonnet made the most of his 21 carries, averaging 9.4 yards per attempt and 9.9 yards per touch.

Wide Receiver: Rashee Rice, SMU

What a start it was for Rashee Rice and the SMU Mustangs. And even though it ended on a sour note with their second-string quarterback Preston Stone breaking his collarbone, Rice still finished with a ridiculous final stat line.

Rice grabbed eight receptions for 180 yards and two scores, all except one catch for nine yards came within the first 20 minutes of the game. It wasn’t that Tulsa figured out how to cover Rice — because no one has this season — it was more because the gameplan changed once Stone left the game.

For the season, Rice has nearly gone over 1,000 yards already and amassed at least 100 yards receiving for the fifth time in 2022.

Wide Receiver: Antoine Green, North Carolina

Every top quarterback needs a top receiver and it appears that Maye has two top receivers in Antoine Green and Josh Downs. Green utilized all 6’2″ of his frame very well in this outing, dominating the catch point and using strong, late hands on other occasions.

Green finished with 10 receptions for 180 yards and two touchdowns, seemingly open on every play. Since returning to the lineup in late September, Green now has three 100-yard games and has recorded 23 receptions, 564 yards, and six touchdowns in just five games.

Wide Receiver: Dorian Singer, Arizona

Coming down on the receiving end of all three of Jayden de Laura’s touchdown passes, Dorian Singer was almost unstoppable against USC. He certainly did everything he could, slicing and dicing his way through USC defensive backs all night long despite the final result.

The 6’1″, 185-pound Singer was everywhere for the Wildcats, winning at every level. He showcased terrific body control and a high-point ability that he used to score on multiple plays with. It was a great individual performance for a rising star at Arizona.

Tight End: Brock Bowers, Georgia

It was yet another dominant outing from the best tight end in college football as Brock Bowers went five catches for 154 yards and a touchdown against Florida. It was his highlight-reel play where he caught a tipped ball on a dead sprint and somehow continued his stride while continuing the catch for a 73-yard touchdown that pushed Georgia’s lead to 21-0.

He showed off another ridiculous display of catch-point ability when he dominated a defensive back on a seam route in the second half. Bowers then showcased his blocking ability in the fourth quarter as the Bulldogs ran away with it in the end. He’s a mismatch for any defense to try and cover for all four quarters.

Flex: Bo Nix, QB, Ole Miss

It’s hard to compete against the Oregon Ducks with Bo Nix playing the way he has over the past few weeks. Against Cal, Nix flashed his special talents on multiple occasions. In total, Nix finished with six total touchdowns, three through the air and another three on the ground.

Sure, the box-score scouts will say he had two interceptions against the Golden Bears, but both were certainly not his fault. One hit his receiver’s chest before bouncing into the Cal defender’s arms, and the other was on a last-second Hail Mary attempt to close out the second quarter.

Nix was sharp, precise, and accurate all game long, understanding when and where to pick his shots. He’s thrown eight touchdowns over his past two games and now has 31 total touchdowns this year.

It’s safe to keep Nix on your Heisman ballots again this week.

Offensive Tackle: Jazston Turnetine, Florida State

The massive right tackle for Florida State was terrific all game long. Jazston Turnetine led the Seminoles on offense as FSU didn’t have to punt all day long against Georgia Tech.

Turnetine was sound in pass protection, keeping qB Jordan Travis clean and even looking for additional work after he had stymied his pass rushers. He was also terrific on the ground, moving incredibly well for a man who tips the charts at 6’7″ and 336 pounds.

Guard: D’Mitri Emmanuel, Florida State

It wasn’t just Turnetine that performed well for Florida State as D’Mitri Emmanuel completed a dominant game from the right side of the field. Emmanuel, from his right guard spot, was routinely seen coming across the formation to help out in pass protection or dropping his own defenders in the run game.

Emmanuel and Turnetine proved to be too much for the Georgia Tech defensive front to get any pressure on Travis from their right, the defensive left.

Center: Sedrick Van Pran, Georgia

Paving the way for a dominant showing on the ground, it was Sedrick Van Pran who continued to work from first to second level on multiple occasions against Florida. Van Pran was dominant at the point of contact and kept his quarterback clean against a very talented Gators defensive front.

Moving exceptionally well on the ground, Van Pran was integral in the Georgia rushing game for 239 yards and four scores on the afternoon.

Guard: Cooper Beebe, Kansas State

Blink. And you would’ve missed the Kansas State offense completely dominating a terrific Oklahoma State defensive front on Saturday. Cooper Beebe was certainly in charge of the Wildcats’ unit that averaged a whopping 14.1 yards per completion and whose running backs averaged 6.9 yards per carry.

Beebe was excellent in all facets once again, continually pushing his defenders completely out of the play and protecting Will Howard beautifully. He was a stalwart in pass protection and a road grader on the ground in a truly dominant outing.

Offensive Tackle: Patrick Paul, Houston

Thanks largely to Patrick Paul, Houston QB Clayton Tune had all day to throw from the pocket against USF. Paul was physically dominant at the point of attack, showcasing impressive strength and great balance through contact against the Bulls.

He was also physically imposing on the ground while keeping a clean sheet in pass protection. Altogether, the Cougars accumulated 490 yards of total offense, and Paul was integral in clearing rushing lanes and keeping his quarterback clean.

DL: J.T. Tuimoloau, Ohio State

It was a masterful performance from a former five-star recruit as J.T. Tuimoloau announced his status as an elite defender on the biggest stage. When it was all said and done, Tuimoloau had six tackles, two sacks, three tackles for loss, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, and two interceptions, one he returned for a touchdown.

As impressive as that statistical showing is, the fact that Tuimoloau created all that havoc himself made the day much more special. He dropped in coverage and stepped in front of a stick route out of the backfield for his first interception, showcasing terrific coverage skills.

MORE: College Football Week 9 Players of the Week

Tuimoloau ripped through intended blockers left and right for his tackles for loss, causing havoc in the passing game and stuffing run plays. And it was his quick win over a tackle in the waning stages of the game that set the stage for his best moment, tossing the tackle to the ground before leaping into the passing lane, snatching the ball out of the air, and returning it 14 yards for the score.

Tuimoloau showcased what made him such a special recruit in a single dominant performance — one good enough to vault him into the top of the 2024 NFL Draft discussion.

 

Defensive Line: Gabe Hall, Baylor

Bending the rules on our positional alignments for this week’s Team of the Week, Gabe Hall is more deserving of a spot than just about anyone else. The big man who plays all over Baylor’s defensive line was electric against Texas Tech.

Rushing his way through for three sacks, it was Hall who won his pass-rush reps at will on Saturday. Hall dominated at the point of attack and had a handful more quarterback pressures. Even if he wasn’t sacking the trio of quarterbacks for the Red Raiders, he was making them feel very uncomfortable.

Defensive Interior: Pryce Yates, UConn

What a difference a coach, a good recruiting class, and a sound defense can make for a program. Doing wonders for UConn this season, Pryce Yates falls into the latter two of the aforementioned changes to the Huskies program.

Yates, a three-star recruit and big-time get for UConn from the state of Texas, proved just how good the UConn defense was against Boston College in Week 9. Ripping through the BC offensive line on multiple occasions, it was Yates who recorded 2.5 total sacks and a forced fumble in a key situation for UConn.

Yates has been sound for UConn in 2022, but this game displayed his high-end capabilities. UConn fans should be excited for more to come.

Defensive Interior: Divine Obichere, Boise State

An absolute masterclass on how to push the pocket and dominate your blocker, Divine Obichere and Boise State simply bullied Colorado State on Saturday. In what is certainly his best performance to date, Obichere was unblockable for Boise State.

Colorado State just simply didn’t have an answer for his strength at the point of attack or Obichere’s speed off the line. It all led to a seven-tackle performance that saw Obichere recorded two sacks and 4.5 tackles for loss.

If he didn’t record a sack or a TFL, you can be Obichere was pushing the pocket and blowing up CSU’s offensive point of attack.

Linebacker: Momo Sanogo, Louisville

The Louisville defense had its way with the Wake Forest offense on Saturday, reeling off eight takeaways. Momo Sanogo was a man on a mission for the Cards, leading the charge in more ways than one. He recorded nine total tackles that included 1.5 tackles for loss and a strip-sack on Wake Forest QB Sam Hartman.

Sanogo also recovered a fumble and helped limit Wake to just two yards per rushing attempt. With Sanogo leading the charge, Louisville sacked Hartman eight times to go with their eight takeaways.

Linebacker: Jackson Mitchell, UConn

Having his way with the Boston College offense, Jackson Mitchell once again led the UConn defense in tackles and on defense. Part of three total takeaways, Mitchell forced a fumble, recovered two fumbles of his own, and made an impressive interception off BC QB Phil Jurkovec.

Mitchell, the nation’s leader in total tackles, added 12 more to his tally against BC as he perfectly patrolled the underneath of the field for UConn.

Linebacker: Tatum Bethune, Florida State

Flying everywhere for the Seminoles, Tatum Bethune made his presence felt on a multitude of plays on Saturday. Bethune wreaked havoc with his instincts and dominant physical ability, pushing his way through for 1.5 sacks and a beautiful day in coverage.

Rushing the passer well and when it mattered most, Bethune looked like a seasoned pass rusher as he got home with multiple sacks on just a handful of blitzes. He was all over the field in coverage as well, helping to limit the Georgia Tech offense to just 198 yards on offense, most of which came in utter garbage time on the last drive of the game and FSU leading 41-10.

Cornerback: Jacquez Warren, Miami (OH)

Putting the icing on the cake for Miami (OH), Jacquez Warren read a DJ Irons pass with perfection and sprinted up the right sideline for a 62-yard pick-6 early in the fourth quarter. Warren dropped perfectly and read Irons’ eyes before making his jump to step in front of the pass and racing for six.

Warren’s interception return for a touchdown pushed the game out of reach at 27-3, coming at a pivotal moment on his side of the field that thwarted a potential Akron scoring drive that could’ve cut the lead to 10. He also had another five total tackles and was terrific in coverage all game long over the middle of the field.

Cornerback: Quincy Riley, Louisville

In one of the most dominant quarters in college football this decade, the Louisville Cardinals forced six turnovers against Wake Forest in the third quarter alone. In total, they recorded a whopping eight takeaways from the prolific Demon Deacons, four fumbles, and four interceptions.

Quincy Riley was on the receiving end of two of those takeaways, completing limiting receivers in his coverage while ripping off two interceptions from Wake QB Sam Hartman. Riley returned one of those for a 90-yard touchdown as time expired in the dominant third quarter.

Sure, Riley got a bit flashy with his second return of the afternoon and fumbled it back to Wake Forest, but the fact remains that the Cardinals defender was more in tune with the Wake offense than the Demon Deacs receivers were.

Cornerback: Kei’Trel Clark, Louisville

Like his teammate here, Kei’Trel Clark also returned an interception for a touchdown against Wake Forest. Clark brilliantly read a stick route at the first down sticks at the start of the third quarter, showing off his closing speed and ability to play through the football in one move.

Clark raced up the sidelines for a 46-yard interception return for a touchdown that started a six-takeaway third frame for Louisville’s defense. He also chipped in with a sack on a delayed blitz and brought down a tackle for loss in what was an imposing defensive performance.

Safety: Doneiko Slaughter, Tennessee

Playing the best game of their season, the Tennessee Volunteers’ defense limited Kentucky’s offense to just 98 yards passing. Doneiko Slaughter was impressive in coverage all game long, making multiple plays, and should have honestly been credited for more.

Slaughter had an interception of his own off Will Levis, but it was his play that set up Juwan Mitchell’s interception that had a bigger impact. With Levis leading the Kentucky offense into the red zone, Slaughter laid a huge hit on the receiver, jarring the ball loose and into the air, where Mitchell was able to intercept it and run 48 yards the other way.

The hit not only took away a completion but it removed the ball from the receiver’s body and took away a scoring chance for Kentucky.

Safety: Maxen Hook, Toledo

A crucial MAC victory that pushed Toledo to bowl eligibility is thanks largely to Maxen Hook’s defensive efforts. After all, it was Hook’s acrobatic interception that sealed the deal and his team-high 13 tackles that paced their defensive efforts all game long.

In a last-ditch effort to get into game-tying field goal range, Hook leaped in front of a receiver and contorted his body just enough to keep the ball from the turf for an impressive interception. Sealing the deal with his first career interception, Hook’s all-around play was capped with an ultra-impressive play.

Flex: Sydney Brown, Illinois

There isn’t much more that can be said about this Illinois defense except that it’s stingy. The best defense in the nation at limiting opposing passing offenses held Nebraska to just 188 yards and a completion percentage of just 45.8%.

Sydney Brown did more than just patrol the middle of the field for the Fighting Illini against Nebraska, he commanded the back half of the action. Brown recorded two interceptions and led the team with six total tackles. In coverage, he was brilliant, but in run defense, he was perhaps even better.

Brown essentially ran the alley like a linebacker and made multiple tackles in the backfield. The nation’s top defense was once again in top form, and Brown was no different.

Kicker: Jake Moody, Michigan

You couldn’t have asked for a better special teams day than Jake Moody had for Michigan. When it mattered most — in a rivalry game historically remembered for botched Michigan special teams plays — Moody was automatic.

MORE: PFN Mock Draft Simulator

With ice in his veins, Moody drilled five field goals and two extra points, leading the charge with 17 of Michigan’s 29 total points. He hit field goals of 22, 25, 33, 39, and 54 yards, remaining perfect on his kicks no matter the distance.

Punter: Michael Turk, Oklahoma

Rounding out quite the performance for Oklahoma, Michael Turk got in on the scoring action in Ames. Against Iowa State, Turk booted the ball six times for 296 yards, pinning Iowa State back inside their own 20-yard line on two occasions.

Head coach Brent Venables also trusted Turk with a trick play on the 2-yard line during a tie ball game. Lining up for a 19-yard field goal attempt, Turk — the holder — was tasked with hitting kicker Zach Schmit on a little shovel pass that Schmit then took in for the two-yard touchdown reception.

With a couple of punts inside the 20 and a touchdown toss, that’s a pretty well-rounded day for the longtime college great.

Kick Returner: Greg Desrosiers Jr., UMass

Giving the Minutemen hope, Greg Desrosiers Jr. was the lone bright spot at times for UMass against New Mexico State. In fact, it was Desrosiers’ kick return that went for 42 yards with just over 1:30 remaining in the second quarter that worked to set up UMass’ 13-10 halftime lead.

In total, Desrosiers totaled 126 yards on four kick returns, nearly half of the total offensive yards the Minutemen put up (259) in the contest.

Punt Returner: Jordyn Tyson, Colorado

The sensational true freshman sparked life in Colorado late in the fourth quarter when Jordyn Tyson dashed up the field on an 88-yard punt return touchdown. In his second score of the game, Tyson utilized his impressive speed for a man his size, coupled with terrific field vision as he weaved his way through Arizona State’s coverage unit.

His score pushed the contest to a one-score game while giving hope to the Buffaloes of a potential comeback. Though it wasn’t meant to be, Tyson still showcased his elite all-around ability and gave hope for brighter futures at Colorado.

Week 9 College Football Team of the Week | Second Team

Offense

QB: Caleb Williams, USC; Jordan Travis, Florida State
RB: Mohamed Ibrahim, Minnesota
RB: Quinshon Judkins, Ole Miss
WR: Marvin Harrison Jr., Ohio State
WR: Josh Downs, North Carolina
WR: Parker Washington, Penn State
TE: Michael Mayer, Notre Dame
FLEX: Deuce Vaughn, Kansas State
OT: Broderick Jones, Georgia
G: Caleb Chandler, Louisville
C: Olusegun Oluwatimi, Michigan
G: Ed Montillus, North Carolina
OT: Trevor Keegan, Michigan

Defense

EDGE: Zach Harrison, Ohio State
EDGE: Leonard Warner III, Florida State
IDL: Byron Young, Tennessee
IDL: Jer’Zhawn Newton, Illinois
LB: Jamoi Hodge, TCU
LB: Yasir Abdullah, Louisville
LB: Tommy Eichenberg, Ohio State
CB: Tyler Nubin, Minnesota
CB: Dashaun Peele, Navy
CB: AJ McCarty, Baylor
S: Christopher Smith, Georgia
S: Peter Manuma, Hawaii
FLEX: Jartavius Martin, Illinois

Special Teams

K: Andres Borregales, Miami (FL)
P: Lou Hedley, Miami (FL)
KR: Jaylon Jackson, Eastern Michigan
PR: Phillip Brooks, Kansas State

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