After thrashing the Duke Blue Devils 48-0 on October 16th, four Virginia football players have been named to the Week 7 ACC Players of the Week. It was a team effort for the Hoos, as their 528 total yards outpaced Duke’s 325. Because of this, three offensive players and one defensive player have been awarded for their impact.
Quarterback Brennan Armstrong has been named ACC Quarterback of the Week for the fourth time this season. Despite sitting out the last quarter, Armstrong threw for 364 yards and two touchdowns, while also adding another score on the ground. He continues his breakout season, in which he has thrown for over 300 yards in all but one game. He currently sits first in the nation in passing yards with 2,824. This passing total ranks fifth in UVA history, and, if all goes well, Armstrong should be able to break Bryce Perkins’s season passing yard record of 3,538 that was set in 2019.
Wide receiver Dontayvion Wicks was named Co-Receiver of the Week, alongside North Carolina’s Josh Downs. Wicks exited the Louisville game early, but he showed no signs of holding back. He finished the game against Duke with seven receptions, 125 yards, and a 20-yard touchdown. This is his first appearance on the weekly list, but Wicks has turned into Armstrong’s favorite deep threat target. His 679 receiving yards rank eighth in the country, and his 21.2 yards per catch put him in sixth. He has been a crucial part of this electrifying passing attack.
Offensive tackle Bobby Haskins also made his first appearance on the list as ACC Offensive Lineman of the Week. Haskins led the way for the offensive line, as he allowed zero pressures and had seven pancake blocks. As mentioned before, the offense compiled 528 total yards, with 164 of them being rushing, their third-highest mark of the year (206 against William & Mary and 181 against Miami). Haskins played a major role in this performance by sealing his assignments to give Armstrong time in the pocket and for the rushing attack to run freely downfield.
Defensive end Mandy Alonso was named ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week for the second time this season, his first being for his performance against Miami. Coming into the game, the Blue Devils had an offense that compiled 496.8 total yards a game, and a rushing attack that ran for 219.3 yards per game. Despite going up against a talented running back in Mataeo Durant, Alonso led a defense that stuffed him for 82 yards on 17 carries. Alonso was asked to shift between his usual edge position and the defensive tackle spot to limit the rushing yards from the middle of the field, and his versatility allowed this Hoos defense to have one of their better showings of the season.
The Cavaliers were able to put the Blue Devils away early, and these four players each played their part exceptionally well. This was an important win for UVA, as it was their third conference win in a row and kept them in the race for the division crown. After losing big to North Carolina and Wake Forest to start ACC play, the Hoos have bounced back in a massive way. They will look to keep this high energy from the past few weeks going when they host the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets on October 23rd at 7:30 P.M. at Scott Stadium.