AFA Backup QB Explodes Against Hawaii, Earns MW Offensive Player of the Week Honors
From the desk of Stuart Buchanan/Mountain West Conference
COLORADO SPRINGS, – Air Force quarterback Mike Schmidt was selected the Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week, while Fresno State linebacker Justin Rice was named MW Defensive Player of the Week and San Diego State punter Brandon Heicklen earned MW Special Teams Player of the Week honors. It is the first weekly honor for all three student-athletes.
MIKE SCHMIDT, AIR FORCE
Senior, Quarterback, Fletcher, North Carolina / Hendersonville HS
- Entered last Saturday’s contest at Hawai‘i on Air Force’s sixth offensive play of the night, leading the Falcons to a 56-26 victory.
- Racked up 267 yards of total offense, the most by a Falcon this season.
- Recorded career highs in every rushing category with 14 carries for 120 yards and three touchdowns.
- Registered a career long run of 61 yards and averaged a career-best 8.6 yards per carry.
- Also recorded career highs in every passing category, connecting on five-of-six passes for 147 yards, including a career-long 75 yards, and one touchdown.
- Six of his 14 carries went for first downs or touchdowns while four of his five completions were good for first downs or touchdowns.
- Is the first Falcon to rush and pass for over 100 yards, respectively, in a game this season.
JUSTIN RICE, FRESNO STATE
Junior, Linebacker, Modesto, California / Central Catholic HS
- In Fresno State’s Friday night victory over UNLV, recorded a game high 10 tackles, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
- Kicked off a 20-0 scoring run for the Bulldogs with an 18-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown with 3:58 left in the third quarter. This was Fresno State’s first fumble return for a touchdown since Oct. 26, 2013.
- Was a key part of a Bulldog defensive unit that forced five turnovers in a game for the first time since Oct. 5, 2013 at Idaho.
BRANDON HEICKLEN, SAN DIEGO STATE
Senior, Punter, Tarzana, California / El Camino Real HS
- Helped the Aztecs beat San José State, 27-17, to become bowl eligible for the 10-consecutive season.
- Punted five times in the contest for 228 yards (45.8 avg.), including a career-long 59-yard boot.
- Four of his five punts were downed inside the 20-yard line, including three inside the three-yard line (2, 1 and 1).
- Became the first FBS punter to have three punts land inside the three-yard line since BYU’s Riley Stephenson had three against San Diego State in the 2012 Poinsettia Bowl (Dec. 20).
- Helped flip the field and gave the Aztecs a 24-yard average field position advantage (43-19), SDSU's largest AFP position in recorded history (since at least 1998).
- Finished with a net average of 44.2 yards.