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NAIA Football Players of the Week No. 3

September 28, 2015
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By Alan Grosbach, Manager of Communications and Sports Information

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Matt Cotiguala of St. Ambrose (Iowa), Patrick Smith of St. Ambrose and Josh Woodard of St. Francis (Ill.) were named NAIA Football National Players of the Week, the national office announced Monday. Cotiguala, Smith and Woodard were chosen for their performances during the week of Sept. 21 – 27 and were selected out of a pool of conference award winners.

National Special Teams Player of the Week
Matt Cotiguala, St. Ambrose (Iowa)
Sr., P/K, Orland Park, Ill.

• Converted 4-of-4 field goals, including a game-long 40-yard attempt, in the Bees’ 39-35 win against Dakota State (S.D.) last Saturday.
• Completed 3-of-3 PATs.
• Totaled 15 points, which is the second-most by a kicker in a single game in St. Ambrose school history.
• Tallied three punts for an average 45.3 yards per punt.
• Leads the NAIA in three statistical categories, including pacing all kickers in scoring per game (11.3).
• First career National Special Teams Player of the Week award.
• Last St. Ambrose National Football Player of the Week: Eric Williamson (offense; Nov. 4, 2013).

National Offensive Player of the Week
Patrick Smith, St. Ambrose (Iowa)
Jr., QB, Springfield, Ill.

• Threw for 404 yards and four touchdowns in St. Ambrose’s 39-35 win against Dakota State (S.D.) last Saturday.
• Completed 70 percent (33-for-47) of his passes.
• Ranks seventh nationally in passing yards per game (307) and total offense per game (307.7).
• First career National Offensive Player of the Week award.
• Last St. Ambrose National Football Player of the Week: Eric Williamson (offense; Nov. 4, 2013).

National Defensive Player of the Week
Josh Woodard, St. Francis (Ill.)
So., DB, Zionsville, Ind.

• Intercepted three passes in the Saints’ 24-14 win against then-No. 7 Robert Morris (Ill.) last Saturday.
• Woodard’s second interception led to a St. Francis scoring drive that gave the Saints the lead for good early in the fourth quarter.
• Recorded one tackle.
• Leads the NAIA in total interceptions with five.
• First career National Defensive Player of the Week award.
• Last St. Francis National Football Player of the Week: E.J. White (offense; Sept. 9, 2013).

For a complete list of all the national statistical leaders, click here.

For the complete NAIA Player of the Week calendar, click here.

Offensive Nominees: Caleb Bedford, Central Methodist (Mo.); Mitch Heikes, Briar Cliff (Iowa); Everett Pollard, Taylor (Ind.); Preston Woodard, Wayland Baptist (Texas); Jacob Russell, Campbellsville (Ky.); Jake Curran, Kansas Wesleyan; Zach Bartlow, Eastern Oregon; Brandon Robertson, Point (Ga.); Andrew Blake, Mayville State (N.D.).

Defensive Nominees: Keylan Smith, Faulkner (Ala.); Kareem Green, Tabor (Kan.); Nick Holshoe, Concordia (Mich.); Alden Mann, Wayland Baptist (Texas); Devon Overall, Evangel (Mo.); Robert Nalewaja, Dickinson State (N.D.); Reshard Allen, Ave Maria (Fla.); Garrett Borcher, Doane (Neb.); James Dowgin, Carroll (Mont.).

Special Teams Nominees: Lavon Wright, Briar Cliff (Iowa); Wendall Williams, Cumberlands (Ky.); Nic Behrens, Dakota State (S.D.); Trey Geiger, Tabor (Kan.); Daniel Martinez, Wayland Baptist (Texas); Matt Plesac, Marian (Ind.); Seth Mason, Montana Western; Brandon Leon, Ave Maria (Fla.); Andrew Zubia, Benedictine (Kan.).

2015 NAIA Football Players of the Week (complete schedule)
Week 1 (Sept. 14)
Offense: Nick Ferrer, Saint Francis (Ind.)
Defense: Caleb Taylor, Faulkner (Ala.)
Special Teams: Daniel Martinez, Wayland Baptist (Texas)
Week 2 (Sept. 21)
Offense: Tray Boone, Dickinson State (N.D.)
Defense: Dontaye Johnson, Robert Morris (Ill.)
Special Teams: DeMario Fair, Valley City State (N.D.)
Week 3 (Sept. 28)
Offense: Patrick Smith, St. Ambrose (Iowa)
Defense: Josh Woodard, St. Francis (Ill.)
Special Teams: Matt Cotiguala, St. Ambrose (Iowa)