Big Sky announces weekly honors

OGDEN, Utah — The Big Sky Conference has announced the ROOT SPORTS Football Players of the Week for games played on Saturday, Oct. 20. North Dakota wide receiver Greg Hardin is the Offensive Player of the Week. Northern Arizona defensive back Anders Battle is the Defensive Player of the Week. Cal Poly kicker/punter Bobby Zalud is the Special Teams Player of the Week.

Hardin, a 5-11, 170-pound junior from Bellevue, Neb., set a Big Sky single-game record with 333 receiving yards in North Dakota’s 40-34 victory Montana. Hardin caught 12 passes, three for touchdowns. His final catch resulted in the game-winning touchdown with 12 seconds left. The 333 receiving yards eclipsed the previous Big Sky record of 315. The 333 yards ranks fourth all-time in FCS history. Hardin finished the game with 420 all-purpose yards, the second-most ever in Big Sky history, and tied for the 10th most in FCS history. Hardin’s 333 receiving yards are the most in any Division I game this season, as are his 420 all-purpose yards. Hardin’s touchdowns went for 39, 43 and 32 yards. His longest catch went for 81 yards.

Battle, a 6-foot, 185-pound junior from Phoenix, Ariz., recorded a career-high 14 tackles with a forced fumble and a pass deflection in Northern Arizona’s 21-7 home win over UC Davis. Battle registered 11 solo stops, and his forced fumble in the second quarter set up Northern Arizona’s second touchdown. NAU’s defense held UC Davis 181 passing yards and no passing touchdowns.

Zalud, a 5-7, 190-pound junior from Carlsbad, Calif., made three field goals and four extra points in Cal Poly’s 37-25 win over Portland State. Zalud nailed field goals of 49, 41 and 20 yards. His 49-yard field goal in the second quarter gave the Mustangs their first lead of the game, 17-14. His 41-yarder in the third quarter put the Mustangs up 20-17. His third field goal got the Mustangs back within two points. This is Zalud’s second Player of the Week honor this season.

ROOT SPORTS, the official television partner of the Big Sky Conference, will air Saturday’s game between Idaho State and Montana beginning at 1:30 p.m. Mountain.

— Big Sky Conference Sports Information