Davis, Marshall Named SEC Players of the Week

Nick Marshall and Chris Davis put themselves in the Auburn football record book with their performances in at Tennessee that earned them SEC Player of the Week honors.

Auburn, Ala.--Auburn junior quarterback Nick Marshall has been named SEC Offensive Player of the Week for his performance vs. Tennessee and senior cornerback Chris Davis is the league's special teams player of the week.

Marshall rushed for 214 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries in Auburn's 55-23 victory at Tennessee. He also threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to C.J. Uzomah.

With Marshall leading the way the Tigers set a school-record for rushing yards vs. an SEC opponent with 444. The Tigers only threw seven passes vs. the Vols because Tennessee was unable to stop Auburn's running attack.

"They really couldn't stop the run so we kept our foot on their throat and just ran it down their throat," Marshall said. "I am just blessed to have the offensive line I have. They opened big holes for us."

Davis raced 85 yards for a touchdown on his punt return for his first score as a Tiger. He also set up another Auburn touchdown with a 42-yard return to take the national lead in punt return average at 24.1 yards per attempt.

Nick Marshall

Marshall was previously named SEC Player of the Week following Auburn's victory at Texas A&M. His 214 rushing yards vs. Tennessee are the most by any SEC player this year and tied him with Bobby Hunt for the third most in Auburn history by an Auburn quarterback. Hunt's performance came vs. Mississippi State in 1959. Travis Tidwell has the AU record with 222 yards vs. Furman in 1946 and Cam Newton is No. 2 with 217 vs. LSU in 2010.

The 9-1 Tigers will be back at home this Saturday for a 2:30 p.m. kickoff vs. the 6-4 Georgia Bulldogs in the 117th renewal of the SEC's oldest rivalry that is tied at 54-54-8.

The punt return TD by Davis was the first for the Tigers since Robert Dunn took one the distance in 2008 vs. ULM. It is the third longest in school history behind a 95-yarder by Bobby Freeman in 1953 vs. Georgia and an 89-yarder by James Owens vs. Florida in 1970. Owens is the uncle of starting Auburn defensive end LaDarius Owens.

Davis has been lobbying the Auburn coaches since his freshman year to let him return punts. Asked about what it meant to take one the distance, the senior said, "It means a lot. I still say I should have back there two or three years ago. I thank Coach (Gus) Malzahn and Coach (Scott) Fountain for giving me the opportunity to do that."

Fountain's special teams group set an NCAA record with an average of 44.85 yards on seven punt/kickoff returns.

When Corey Grant took the second half kickoff 90 yards for a score it marked the first time since 1984 the Tigers returned a kickoff and a punt for a touchdown in the same game. That happened in a victory over Southern Miss in which Brent Fullwood raced 96 yards with a kickoff and Trey Gainous scored from 45 yards out on a punt return.

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