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Tanner named National Offensive Player of Week

Becomes second Blue Raider to win national award

November 23, 2008 · Athletic Communications

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee junior tailback Phillip Tanner has been named the Walter Camp Football Foundation National Offensive Player of the Week as announced by the organization Sunday.

It marks the second time in the FBS era that a Middle Tennessee player has earned national player of the week honors and both have come under Rick Stockstill. Safety Damon Nickson won the defensive award in 2006.

A native of Dallas, Texas, Tanner enjoyed the greatest day of any player in Sun Belt Conference history in Middle Tennessee's 52-13 win against North Texas Saturday.

Tanner set the Sun Belt Conference single-game record for points and touchdowns with six scores in the win. Tanner rushed for five touchdowns and returned a kickoff 92 yards for another. His six touchdowns set the SBC single-game touchdown record and his 36 points also were a single-game conference record.

In the process, Tanner also tied the Middle Tennessee single-game touchdown and scoring records. He finished with a career-best 159 rushing yards on just 14 carries. With Middle Tennessee clinging to a 17-13 lead in the second quarter, Tanner (who had scored one TD in the first quarter) ripped off four touchdowns in the second quarter alone, and he added his sixth score on a 92-yard kickoff return to start the second half.

Tanner finished with 301 all-purpose yards, which were the third-most in school history, to lead the Blue Raiders to their third straight win and keep the team's hopes of bowl eligibility alive. Middle Tennessee is 5-6 with one game remaining - at Louisiana-Lafayette, Dec. 3.

About the Award: This is the fifth consecutive year that the Walter Camp Football Foundation will honor one offensive and one defensive player as its national Bowl Subdivision player of the week during the regular season. Recipients are selected by a panel of national media members and administered by the Walter Camp Football Foundation.

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