Two Virginia Cavaliers got the nod in this week’s ACC Player of the Week honors after winning their season debut over Duke. Zane Zandier was named the ACC Linebacker of the Week, while standout first year wide receiver Lavel Davis Jr. earned both ACC Receiver and Rookie of the Week.
Zandier finished with 15 total tackles against the Blue Devils, a new career high, with two solo tackles and two tackles for a loss. He led a Virginia defense that forced Duke into seven turnovers, and even broke up a pass during the contest. Duke only had 56 total rushing yards, something Zandier attributed to Virginia’s game plan and execution.
“I think going into the game, we just had a really good plan,” Zandier said after the game. “We had a lot of time to prepare and, obviously it being our first opportunity to come out here and play football, we were just all fired up. I think we executed pretty good in the run game, and I think we are just a pretty gap-sound defense.”
Davis made quite the impact in his first game as a Cavalier. He earned both the Receiver and Rookie of the Week honors after hauling in four catches for 101 yards and two touchdowns. His 6-7 frame makes him the perfect target for new QB Brennan Armstrong, and his 101 receiving yards set a new UVA record for first year receivers in school history.
According to Kevin Pulsifer, a researcher for ESPN Stats and Info, Davis is the second Virginia freshman with 4+ receptions, 100+ receiving yards, and two touchdowns. The other? Billy McMullen in 1999 against NC State.
Both will need similar performances this weekend as the Hoos hit the road to play No. 1 Clemson on Saturday at 8pm on ACC Network.