IOWA CITY, Iowa - University of Iowa senior defensive tackle Thomas Nardo has been named Big Ten Conference defensive Player of the Week for his play in Iowa's 45-17 win over Louisiana-Monroe. The Big Ten honor is the first for Nardo and Iowa's second Player of the Week honor in 2011. QB James Vandenberg was named offensive Player of the Week following Iowa's win over Pittsburgh.
Nardo (6-3, 277) is a native of Lancaster, Pa., where he attended Catholic High School. He joined the Iowa program as a walk-on and during his career has earned a scholarship.
Nardo started for the second time in Iowa's win over ULM. He recorded a career-high 12 tackles in the win, including six solo tackles, two tackles for loss and a shared QB sack. Nardo and his defensive teammates held ULM to just 59 net rushing yards and the Warhawks had just one rushing play gain over six yards.
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In four games, Nardo has recorded eight solo tackles and 16 assists. He has three tackles for loss, one pass break-up and one forced fumble.
Nardo is the first Hawkeye to earn the defensive award since DB Shaun Prater was honored last Nov. 1. Nardo is the first Iowa defensive lineman to earn Player of the Week honors since DE Adrian Clayborn was recognized Oct. 4, 2010.
The Hawkeyes are idle this weekend and return to action at Penn State on Saturday, Oct. 8.
Here is the full list of Big Ten honorees this week.
Co-Offensive Player of the Week
Denard Robinson, Michigan
Jr., QB, Deerfield Beach, Fla./Deerfield Beach
· Rushed for 200 yards and three touchdowns in Michigan's win over San Diego State on Saturday
· His 200 rushing yards are the seventh most in a game by a quarterback in Big Ten history
· Moved into second place on the Big Ten's career rushing yards list by a quarterback with 2,605, second only to former Indiana signal caller Antwaan Randle El (3,895)
· Also threw for 93 yards for a total of 293 yards of total offense against the Aztecs
· Claims his second weekly honor this year and the fifth of his career.
· Last Michigan Offensive Player of the Week: Denard Robinson (Sept. 12, 2011)
Matt McGloin, Penn State
Jr., QB, Scranton, Pa./West Scranton
· Completed 82 percent of his passes in leading Penn State to a win over Eastern Michigan
· Was 14-of-17 for 220 yards and three touchdowns after entering the game early in the second quarter
· Entered the game with a 3-0 lead and left the game in the third quarter with a 31-0 advantage
· Claims the first Big Ten weekly award of his career
· Last Penn State Offensive Player of the Week: Darryl Clark (Nov. 22, 2009)
Defensive Player of the Week
Tom Nardo, Iowa
Sr., DL, Lancaster, Pa./Catholic
· Finished with a career-high 12 tackles in helping Iowa defeat visiting Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday
· Totaled six solo tackles and six assisted stops
· Also finished with two tackles for loss, including a half sack
· Wins his first career Big Ten Player of the Week honor
· Last Iowa Defensive Player of the Week: Shaun Prater (Nov. 1, 2010)
Special Teams Player of the Week
Derek Dimke, Illinois
Sr., K, Rockford, Ill./Boylan
· Was a perfect 3-for-3 on his field goal attempts in Illinois' three-point win over Western Michigan
· Converted on attempts from 39, 35 and 21, with the final kick giving the Illini the game-winning points
· Claims his first weekly award this season and the third of his career
· Last Illinois Special Teams Player of the Week: Derek Dimke (Oct. 11, 2010)
Freshman of the Week
Donovonn Young, Illinois
RB, Houston Texas/Katy
· Rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown on 12 attempts in Illinois' win over Western Michigan
· Produced the first 100-yard game by an Illinois freshman since Jason Ford in 2008
· Scored on a 14-yard run in the third quarter, giving Illinois a 17-13 lead.
· Claims his first career weekly honor
· Last Illinois Freshman of the Week: Houston Bates (Sept. 5, 2011)