Kevin Butler, former University of Georgia legendary kicker and a member of the Georgia radio broadcast team, will each week during the 2017 football season select his offensive, defensive and special teams players of the week for Bulldawg Illustrated. Here are Butler’s selections and reasons why for the Bulldogs’ 42-13 win over Kentucky Saturday.
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Senior tailbacks Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, who played spectacularly in their final game at Sanford Stadium. Chubb rushed for 151 yards on 15 carries (10.1 avg.) and scored touchdowns on runs of 8 and 55 yards. Michel ran for 87 yards on 12 carries (7.2 avg.) and tallied touchdowns on runs of 37, 8 and 4 yards.
“The senior duo of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel completed the goal by coming back for their senior year and winning out between the hedges,” said Butler. “This is the first team to win every game against the East opponents on the way to clinching the East Division and securing a trip to Atlanta for the SEC championship game. Nick will end up the second-leading rusher in UGA history and Sony will be in the top 5 also in rushing, which is impressive. We will miss their leadership and production, but they are not finished yet. Two damn good Dawgs!”
Junior inside linebacker Roquan Smith, who again led the Bulldogs’ outstanding defensive effort by making nine tackles, which included one sack and one tackle-for-loss.
“We could have seen Roquan’s last game between the hedges as well as that of our seniors,” said Butler. “It was another stellar performance from one of the best linebackers in the nation. His speed and physical play separates him from other linebackers. Nine tackles in the SEC home closer was yet another great game. His attitude and character are unmatched and his future is bright!”
Graduate senior punter Cameron Nizialek, who averaged 48.0 on his only two punts of the night with one of his kicks, a 51-yarder, putting the Wildcats back at their own 15-yard line.
“The senior transfer from Columbia closed out the home schedule with that very tough and spectacular performance against Kentucky,” said Butler. “Though he only had two punts, statistically his third punt helped UGA to a score. The roughing call on Cam was a scare but Cam returned to net 48 yards, which completely flipped the field for UGA. The Ray Guy Award semifinalist made his case for the trophy. It was only one year for Cam but, what a year!”
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