Valladay's Complete Effort Earns MW Offensive Player of Week Honors

Tracy Ringolsby

From the Desk of Nick Seeman/Wyoming Athletic Department

LARAMIE –University of Wyoming sophomore running back Xazavian Valladay was named the Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week on Monday. It is the first Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week honor for the Pokes this season and the first of Valladay’s career.

The Mountain West also announced that Colorado State safety Logan Stewart was named MW Defensive Player of the Week and San José State place-kicker Matt Mercurio earned MW Special Teams Player of the Week honors. It is the second weekly honor for Mercurio and first for Stewart.

Valladay recorded 280 all-purpose yards in a 31-3 win over Nevada on Saturday. It was the highest all-purpose yard total in the Mountain West this season and the most by a Cowboy since Brian Hill recorded 302 against Nevada in 2016. Valladay rushed for a career-high 206 yards and grabbed two catches for a career-high 74 yards.

Valladay recorded a 53-yard touchdown grab on the first offensive play of the game for the Pokes. It was the longest touchdown reception by a Wyoming running back in the Mountain West era of Cowboy Football.

The only other Cowboy player to earn MW honors this year was senior safety Alijah Halliburton, who was named the MW Defensive Player of the Week after the season opening game against Missouri.

The Pokes are now bowl eligible for the fourth-straight season for the first time since the 1996-99. Wyoming has also won seven-straight contest inside War Memorial Stadium.

Stewart, a junior safety from Loveland, Colo., had seven tackles, including four solo stops, and two fourth quarter interceptions in the Rams 41-31 victory against Fresno State.

Mercurio, a freshman from Salinas, Cal., scored 14 points in San José State’s 34-29 road victory over Army. The only MW kicker to score more than 10 points last weekend, Mercurio kicked four field goals and two point after touchdowns.

He tied a single-game program record with four made field goals, converting on kicks from 30, 23, 38 and 28 yards, and has now made 10 consecutive field goals.