Northern Illinois University seniors Jordan Lynch and Ken Bishop took home Mid-American Conference Player of the Week honors following their performances in a 63-19 win at UMass, the league announced Monday.
Lynch earned his fifth MAC West Offensive Player of the Week honor this year, tying Steve Azar and Garrett Wolfe for the school record for league player of the week awards in a season, while Bishop picked up his second MAC West Defensive Player of the Week honor this season.
In just one half and one drive at UMass, Lynch ran for 119 yards and a career-high four touchdowns, and completed 10-of-13 passes for 160 yards and a score to lead NIU to a 63-19 victory. Lynch left the game after scoring his fourth rushing TD of the game on an 11-yard run with 10:21 to play in the third quarter and NIU leading 42-13.
The Chicago native scored on runs of six, 25 and 19 yards in the first quarter and threw a season-long 66-yard TD pass to Juwan Brescacin in the second period. Lynch, who is a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien Award, tallied his fourth game this season with 100-plus rushing and 150-plus passing yards. He has thrown at least one touchdown pass in 22 consecutive games and has thrown for at least 100 yards in each of those games.
Bishop once again dominated the middle for the NIU defense as the big defensive tackle made a career-high nine tackles to lead all NIU defenders and collected his first career interception, which he returned 14 yards to the UMass six-yard line. Of Bishop’s nine tackles, 1.5 were for loss.
On the interception, Bishop sniffed out the screen and jumped in front of the pass to make the pickoff. NIU scored one play later to take a 28-6 lead early in the second quarter. The Huskies held their opponent under 21 points for the third straight game. A native of Bishop ranks second on the team with 4.5 tackles for loss, and is tied for fourth on the team with 44 tackles, best among NIU defensive linemen.
Five Huskies have garnered 11 MAC West Player of the Week honors this season.
Tommylee Lewis earned offensive and special teams player of the week accolades following the Idaho and Purdue games. Mathew Sims picked up his player of the week honor after hitting the game-winning field goal at Iowa in the season opener, while Cameron Stingily’s performance at Kent State gave him offensive player of the week honors.
The Huskies play their fourth home game of the season Nov. 13 when NIU welcomes Ball State to Huskie Stadium in a pivotal MAC West contest. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Tickets for the NIU-Ball State game are on sale online or by calling 815-753-PACK (7225).