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NAIA Football Players of the Week No. 10

November 10, 2014
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By Alan Grosbach, Manager of Communications and Sports Information

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Darian Anderson of Ottawa (Kan.), Jace Billingsley of Eastern Oregon and Nick DeBenedetti of Saint Xavier (Ill.) have been named the NAIA Football National Players of the Week, the national office announced Monday. The trio was chosen for their performances during the week of Nov. 3 – 9 and were chosen out of a pool of conference and independent award winners. Anderson, Billingsley and DeBenedetti are the final award winners for the 2014 season.

National Defensive Player of the Week
Darien Anderson, Ottawa (Kan.)
Jr., DB, West Pittsburg, Calif.

• Recorded two interceptions in No. 14 Ottawa’s 42-7 win against then-No. 18 Friends (Kan.) last Saturday.
• Also recover a fumble and tallied three tackles.
• Tied for the team lead with three interceptions this season.
• First career National Player of the Week selection.
• Last player from Ottawa to earn National Player of the Week honors: Erik Brown (defensive) (Sept. 16, 2013).

National Offensive Player of the Week
Jace Billingsley, Eastern Oregon
Jr., WR, Winnemucca, Nev.

• Led the Mountaineers with 294 all-purpose yards in last weekend’s 45-21 win against College of Idaho.
• Caught nine passes for 156 receiving yards and one touchdown.
• Recorded 20 carries for 138 rushing yards and two scores.
• Ranks third in the NAIA in all-purpose yards (1,788) and fifth in all-purpose yards per game (178.8).
• First career National Player of the Week selection.
• Last player from Eastern Oregon to earn National Player of the Week honors: Marc David (special teams) (Sept. 29, 2014).

National Special Teams Player of the Week
Nick DeBenedetti, Saint Xavier (Ill.)
Sr., WR, Tinley Park, Ill.

• Returned a punt 51 yards for a touchdown in Saint Xavier’s 45-23 road win over Trinity International (Ill.) last Saturday. The score gave the Cougars a 17-0 lead to close out the first quarter.
• Also recorded a punt return of 50 yards in the contest.
• Tallied three kick off returns for an average of 36.3 yards per return, including a game-high 56 yarder.
• Ranks 11th in total punt returns (174) and 14th in punt return yards per attempt (11.6).
• First career National Player of the Week selection.
• Last player from Saint Xavier to earn National Player of the Week honors: Zach Dolph (defensive) (Oct. 28, 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: Jacob Russell, Campbellsville (Ky.); Erik Anderson, Olivet Nazarene (Ill.); Marcus Mata, Saint Mary (Kan.); Myles King, Graceland (Iowa); Sheldon Augustine, Langston (Okla.); Brandon Wegher, Morningside (Iowa); Tevin Lake, Marian (Ind.); Kurtis Walls, Valley City State (N.D.); Billy Pavlock, Webber International (Fla.).

Defensive Nominees: Keshaun Malone, Bacone (Okla.); Trent Bragg, Siena Heights (Mich.); Alex Bartlett, Grand View (Iowa); Tait Sibbel, Concordia (Neb.); David Meis, Montana Tech; Donald Styles, Pikeville (Ky.); Dance Estes, Southeastern (Fla.); Nick Mcbeain, Valley City State (N.D.); Michael Barnes, Missouri Valley.

Special Teams Nominees: Cristian Casillas, MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.); Trey Tully, Oklahoma Baptist; Raphael Dunson, Siena Heights (Mich.); Ricky Rodriguez, Bethel (Kan.); Jalen Ashby, Union (Ky.); Rhys Felton, Carroll (Mont.); Caleb Winter, Southeastern (Fla.); Jordan Pedersen, Doane (Neb.).

2014 NAIA Football Players of the Week (complete schedule)
Week 1 (Sept. 8)
Offense: Melvin Mason, Southern Oregon
Defense: Justus Dauscha, Cumberland (Tenn.)
Special Teams: Mike Self, Cumberland (Tenn.)
Week 2 (Sept. 15)
Offense: Terrell Robinson, Faulkner (Ala.)
Defense: Cory Brady, College of Idaho
Special Teams: Greg Conry, Peru State (Neb.)
Week 3 (Sept. 22)
Offense: Beau Eriksson, Jamestown (N.D.)
Defense: Eric Price, Marian (Ind.)
Special Teams: Josh Techeira, Robert Morris (Ill.)
Week 4 (Sept. 29)
Offense: Austin Dodge, Southern Oregon
Defense: Josh Calmer, Grand View (Iowa)
Special Teams: Marc David, Eastern Oregon
Week 5 (Oct. 6)
Offense: Chris Allen, Friends (Kan.)
Defense: Eric Walker, Southwestern (Kan.)
Special Teams: Vince Folston, Southwestern (Kan.)
Week 6 (Oct. 13)
Offense: Ryan Kasdorf, Morningside (Iowa)
Defense: Carlton Toussaint, Bluefield (Va.)
Special Teams: Josh Techeira, Robert Morris (Ill.)
Week 7 (Oct. 20)
Offensive: Brandon Wegher, Morningside (Iowa)
Defensive: Justin Wohlert, Northwestern (Iowa)
Special Teams: Martin Waddick, Marian (Ind.)
Week 8 (Oct. 27)
Offensive: Austin Dodge, Southern Oregon
Defensive: Markeith Cooper, MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.)
Special Teams: Daniel Martinez, Wayland Baptist (Texas)
Week 9 (Nov. 3)
Offensive: Chris Swingle, Culver-Stockton (Mo.)
Defensive: Andy Smith, Culver-Stockton (Mo.)
Special Teams: Cristian Casillas, MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.)
Week 10 (Nov. 10)
Offensive: Jace Billingsley, Eastern Oregon
Defensive: Darian Anderson, Ottawa (Kan.)
Special Teams: Nick DeBenedetti, Saint Xavier (Ill.)