ST. PAUL, Minn. – Eureka College football players Wes Schmidgall (Eureka, Ill./Eureka H.S./Culver-Stockton) and Jordan Jefferson (Normal, Ill./Normal West H.S.) have each been named Upper Midwest Athletic Conference Player of the Week for their efforts last Saturday against Greenville, the conference office announced Tuesday. Additionally, Schimdgall's 18-catch performance for 273 yards and three touchdowns landed him on the D3Football.com national Team of the Week.
Schmidgall, who earned the UMAC Offensive Player of the Week award for the first time this season and the second time in his EC career, set new career-highs with 18 receptions for 273 yards against Greenville. He scored all three of his touchdowns in the final seven minutes of the game, leading an improbable fourth-quarter by the Red Devils that erased a 15-point deficit.
Schmidgall's 273 receiving yards were the most by a Division III player in a single game this season, while the 18 receptions were the second-most. For the season, Schmidgall ranks third nationally with 141.0 receiving yards per game and 10th with 8.0 catches per contest.
The D3Football.com Team of the Week, presented by Scoutware, recognizes the top player at each position from the previous week. The website, which has covered NCAA Division III football on a national basis for nearly two decades, received 105 nominations for the 22 spots on the team. Schmidgall was joined at the wide receiver position by Dubuque's Michael Zweifel, who made 17 catches for 207 yards and three touchdowns in the Spartans' victory at Buena Vista.
Jefferson was named UMAC Special Teams Player of the Week for the second time after averaging 41.6 yards on seven punts last Saturday against Greenville. Jefferson also played a pivotal role on Eureka's kickoff unit, recovering a successful onside kick in the fourth quarter that setup Eureka's final touchdown drive of the day. Jefferson, who ranks second among UMAC punters with a season average of 38.8 yards per kick, previously earned UMAC Special Teams Player of the Week accolades on Sept. 20, 2011.
The Red Devils will head north this weekend to square off against Northwestern (Minn.) at 4 p.m. on Saturday as part of the UMAC's 12th annual Dome Day at the Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minn. Eureka is 1-1 all-time at the event.