PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Rutgers true freshman free safety Joe Lefeged (Germantown, Md.) was honored as the BIG EAST Football Defensive Player of the Week, while junior running back Ray Rice (New Rochelle, N.Y.) was named to the Conference's honor roll, the league office announced on Monday.
Lefeged, who has played in all six games in 2007, registered a career-high six tackles in Saturday's 38-14 victory over Syracuse in the Carrier Dome. He sacked SU quarterback Andrew Robinson twice, causing a Robinson fumble, which RU recovered on his second sack of the afternoon. In addition to his two sacks, the safety also applied pressure to Robinson in the fourth quarter, causing the Orange quarterback to throw an interception to fellow true freshman Jonathan Freeny (Margate, Fla.).
Rice amassed a season-high 196 yards on 36 carries and scored three touchdowns in the win over the Orange. He has now scored a touchdown in 13 consecutive games – the longest streak in the nation. Rice has ran for at least 100 yards in 18 games in his career, one shy of the school record set by "JJ" Jennings from 1971-73. The running back moved into third place in BIG EAST history in rushing yards (3,735) and into a tie for fifth place in league history in rushing touchdowns (38). The junior also tied his career high (for the third-straight week) with four receptions for 29 yards at Syracuse.
It marked the second time this season a Scarlet Knight was honored with one of the league's Player of the Week awards. Junior wide receiver Tiquan Underwood (Lawrenceville, N.J.) was honored on Sept. 3 following his performance against Buffalo.
Rutgers hosts No. 2 USF on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in front of a sold-out Rutgers Stadium and a national television audience on ESPN.
Source Rutgers press release