Trevor Etienne named Doak Walker National Running Back

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SophomTrevor Etienneore churns out a career-high 172 yards and Gators tops Vols for 10th straight time in The Swamp

DALLAS (SMU) – Florida running back Trevor Etienne rushed for a career-high 172 yards on 23 carries and scored one touchdown as the Gators upset No. 11 Tennessee, 29-16 in Gainesville. The performance earned him the Doak Walker National Running Back of the Week honor for games of the weekend of Sept. 16.

The 5-9, 205-pound sophomore from Jennings, La., opened the scoring for Florida with a 62-yard touchdown run. Coming into the game, Tennessee was yielding just 87 rushing yards per game. The career-best 172-yard effort was the third 100-yard rushing game of Etienne’s career and his first of the 2023 season. He accounted for six of Florida’s eight explosive plays, each of them a rush of at least 12 yards.

Florida has won 17 of 19 in the series from Tennessee, including 10 straight in Gainesville.

The Gators (2-1) host Charlotte on Saturday at 7 p.m. on SEC Network Plus.

Other candidates for the honor in Week 3 included:

Jonathon Brooks, Texas: Helped lead Texas to a 31-10 win over Wyoming in rushing for career highs of 164 yards and 21 carries. The sophomore from Hallettsville, Texas, had a significant role on two fourth-quarter touchdown drives that broke the game open for the Longhorns after a 10-10 third-quarter tie.

Tajh Brooks, Texas Tech: Rushed for a career-high 158 yards in a 41-3 victory over Tarleton. The senior from Manor, Texas, averaged 8.3 yards per carry on 19 attempts and hit the 100-yard mark for the fifth time in his career and the first time this season as the Red Raiders had a season-high 221 rushing yards. His 19 carries also marked a new career high.

Audric Estimé, Notre Dame: Set a career-high for the second-straight week with 176 yards, adding a touchdown in a 41-17 win over Central Michigan. The junior from Nyack, N.Y., now has three consecutive 100-yard performances (134 at NC State; 116 vs. Tennessee State) for the first time in his career and is one of only three FBS backs to have three games over the century mark.

Kyle Monangai, Rutgers: Rushed for 143 yards and three touchdowns on 16 carries in a 35-16 win over Virginia Tech, marking the first time a Scarlet Knight has topped 100 rushing yards in consecutive games since 2016. The junior from Roseland, N.J., leads the Big Ten in rushing.

Nate Noel, App State: Ccored from 68 yards out on App State’s second offensive play and posted his fourth straight 100-yard game dating back to last season with a career-high 193 yards on 26 attempts as the Mountaineers topped East Carolina, 43-28.

The Doak Walker Award presented by the PwC SMU Athletic Forum has been awarded to the nation’s top running back since 1990. Since 2022, the award has recognized a national running back of the week. A select 20-person committee from the award’s full voting body of media and past winners chooses the weekly recipient. On Aug. 9, a preseason candidates list was released and semifinalists for the award will be named on Nov. 21. A week later, the three finalists will be announced.

The 2023 Doak Walker Award winner will be unveiled live on The Home Depot College Football Awards, televised by ESPN on Dec. 7 or 8. The annual banquet, where the winner and the recipient of the 2024 PwC Doak Walker Legends Award will be honored, will take place in February in Dallas.

The Doak Walker Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA includes college football’s most prestigious awards and its 24 awards have honored more than 900 recipients dating back to 1935. This season, 12 NCFAA awards will honor national players of the week each Tuesday. For more information about the NCFAA and its award programs, visit the redesigned or follow on X at @NCFAA.

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