NAIA Football Players of the Week ? No. 1

NAIA Football Players of the Week ? No. 1

By Nikki Sherrill, Communications & Sports Information Intern

KANSAS CITY, MO. –  Jacob Giles of Dakota State (S.D.) has been named the National Offensive Player of the Week, Jeff Branch of Presentation (S.D.) is this week’s Defensive Player of the Wek and Doane’s (Neb.) Andres Buroin was selected as the Special Teams Player of the Week, the national office announced Monday. These athletes were chosen for their performances during the week of Sept. 5 – 11 and were selected out of a pool of conference award winners.


National Offensive Player of the Week
Jacob Giles, Dakota State (S.D.)
Jr., QB, Madison, S.D.

  • In only the first three games of the season, Giles has completed 82-of-131 for 1,078 yards. Has averaged 359.3 passing yards per game as well.
  • Giles has thrown 16 touchdown passes and had no interceptions for the Trojans.
  • He now has a Dakota State record for most touchdown passes in a single game with seven against St. Ambrose (Iowa). The Trojans won this game 62-48.
  • In another record setting area, Giles set a new school record for most completions in a single game with 32-of-42 completed passes, good for a 76.2 percent completion rate.
  • Giles led his team to two victories over NAIA Top 25 teams this season, which is the first time in more than 20 years DSU has had two victories over nationally ranked teams.
  • This is the first Player of the Week honor for Giles.
  • Last Dakota State National Football Player of the Week: Ben Kullos (defensive; Oct. 19, 2015).

National Special Teams Player of the Week
Andres Burgoin, Doane (Neb.)
Jr., K, San Diego, Calif.

  • Burgoin accounted for 11 points in Doane's 11-point victory over NCAA DII William Jewell (Mo.). Doane trailed 12-6 at the half, and Burgoin added a field goal and two PATs in the second half to help the Tigers to a 23-12 win.
  • Was 2-for-2 on PATs and 3-for-4 on field goals with his longest coming in a 43-yards.
  • Ranks No. 2 in field goals (2.0), No. 3 in scoring (kicking) per game (9.0) and No. 4 in total field goals (4) in the NAIA.
  • This is Burgoin's first Player of the Week honor. 
  • Last Doane National Football Player of the Week: JerSean Walder (defensive; Sept. 23, 2013)

National Defensive Player of the Week
Jeff Branch, Presentation (S.D.)
Sr., DE, Virginia Beach, Va.

  • Branch had a "pick-6" with a 32-yard return. His scoring did not stop there, as Branch had a forced fumble and fumble return for another six points to help Presentation to a 29-0 win over Briar Cliff (Iowa).
  • Recorded nine tackles with six being solo. His tackles tallied up 18 total yards lost. ALso made 2.5 sacks for a total of 16.5 yards.
  • Ranks No. 2 in sacks per game (2.3) and tackles for loss per game (3.0). Also ranks No. 3 in total sacks (4.5) and No. 4 in total sacks for loss (4.5).
  • Owns 32 tackles on the year and 8.5 sacks.
  • First career Defensive Player of the Week award for Branch.

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

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

Offensive Nominees: Rashaan Gaymon, Olivet Nazarene (Ill.); Kelly Cordova, Kansas Wesleyan; Nick Ferrer, Saint Francis (Ind.); Dillon Turner, Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.); Chandler Whittlesey, Union (Ky.); Kievon Jackson, Langston (Okla.); Kievon Jackson, Langston (Okla.); Dylan Beasley, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.); Zack Davis, Southern Oregon; Gary Chouloute, Webber International (Fla.); Logan Brettell, Baker (Kan.).  

Defensive Nominees: Sebastian Swift, Olivet Nazarene (Ill.); Dylan Dittemore, Marian (Ind.); Gunnar Kayser, Montana Tech; Serge Vita, Union (Ky.); Evan Scott, Langston (Okla.); Evan Scott, Langston (Okla.); Vandy Smith, Faulkner (Ala.); Michael Hedlund, Concordia (Neb.); Malik Brooks, Webber International (Fla.); Michael Guerrero, Kansas Wesleyan; Wyatt Beebe, Avila (Mo.). 

Special Teams Nominees: Joe Rose, Cumberlands (Ky.); Abdul Mahdi, Saint Xavier (Ill.); Preston Woodard, Wayland Baptist (Texas) ; Jared Dougherty, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.); Cody Johnson, Dickinson State (N.D.); Jeremiah Benson, William Penn (Iowa); Keenan Fagan, Rocky Mountain (Mont.); James Augusta, Bethany (Kan.); Caleb Winter, Southeastern (Fla.); Brock Quinlan, Siena Heights (Mich.).

2016 NAIA Football Players of the Week
Week 1 (Sept. 12)
Offense: Jacob Giles, Dakota State (S.D.)
Defense: Jeff Branch, Presentation (S.D.)
Special Teams: Andres Burgoin, Doane (Neb.)

Championship Information

NAIA Football Championship

November 23, 30, Dec. 7, 2019
Football Championship Series
Campus Sites

December 21, 2019
Eddie G. Robinson Stadium
Ruston, La.