06 Sep

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Three Longhorns earn opening weekend Big 12 football awards

(image via TexasSports.com)

(image via TexasSports.com)

IRVING, Texas – Three Texas Longhorns are among the award winners for the opening week of the 2016 Big 12 football season. QB Tyrone Swoopes was named Big 12 Co-Offensive Player of the Week, DT Chris Nelson was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week and QB Shane Buechele was named Big 12 Newcomer of the Week.

Co-Offensive Player of the Week
QB Tyrone Swoopes, Sr.
Whitewright, Texas (Whitewright)

  • Quarterback Tyrone Swoopes rushed 13 times for 53 yards and three touchdowns on Sunday night in a 50-47 2OT victory against No. 10 Notre Dame.
  • His third touchdown, the game-winner in double-overtime, clinched Texas' first win over a Top-10 opponent at home since 2008 and their first such win in a season-opener since 1980.
  • Swoopes' first touchdown of the night came from one yard out, as he rushed over right end and plowed into the end zone to give the Longhorns a 21-14 halftime lead.
  • Swoopes then impressed in the overtime sessions, scoring both of Texas' touchdowns. In the first overtime, he rushed in from three yards out to give UT a 44-37 lead.
  • In the second OT, after Texas had fallen behind 47-44, Swoopes found the end zone from six yards out to give UT the win.
  • With his 53 yards rushing, Swoopes is now seventh among QBs in school history with 845 yards rushing. His three touchdowns move him into a tie for third among QBs with 20.

Defensive Player of the Week
DT Chris Nelson, So.
Lakeland, Fla. (Victory Christian)

  • Sophomore defensive tackle Chris Nelson started the first game of his career on Sunday night against No. 10 Notre Dame at defensive tackle.
  • Nelson led the Longhorns to a thrilling double-overtime win with a team-high eight tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss.
  • Both marks – the eight tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss – were a career-high. Nelson's previous career-high was three tackles and one tackle for loss in a game.

Newcomer of the Week
QB Shane Buechele, Fr.
Arlington, Texas (Lamar)

  • True freshman quarterback Shane Buechele got the starting nod for the Longhorns in Sunday night's victory over No. 10 Notre Dame.
  • He became just the second true freshman all-time to start the season opener at quarterback for Texas and the first since Bobby Layne in 1944.
  • Buechele finished the night responsible for three touchdowns – two through the air and one on the ground.
  • In total he finished the night 16-of-26 through the air and had 313 yards of total offense. His 280 passing yards and 313 total yards were both records for a true freshman QB at Texas.
  • His 72-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter was tied for the fourth-longest by a freshman in school history.

James Schleicher is the publisher of Horns Illustrated magazine. He's also a fifth generation Texan and lifelong Austinite. Follow @HornsIllus twitter to keep up with all things Horns Illustrated.