BOONE — Appalachian State running back Nate Noel has been named the Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Week following his standout, savvy performance in a win against Marshall.
Noel rushed the ball 20 times for a career-high 187 yards, including 104 during a fourth quarter in which the Mountaineers turned a 30-21 deficit into a 31-30 victory.
When App State took over at its own 8-yard line with 4:04 left and a one-point lead at its disposal, Noel rushed for 87 yards on a game-clinching series. He had gains of 11, 14, 41 and 22 yards before smartly going down five yards short of the end zone in the final two minutes to prevent Marshall from possibly regaining possession with an eight-point deficit.
PFF College also named Noel to its "Secret Superstar of the Week," noting that eight of his 17 second-half carries gained at least 10 yards, with seven of the eight coming when App State needed 10 or more yards for a first down. PFF also stated that the offensive line enabled Noel to average 4.7 yards before contact and then gain an average of 4.7 yards after contact, with 13 broken tackles on the night.
Through four games this season, Noel has a league-high 437 rushing yards (for a league-best 109.3 rushing yards per game). He's averaged 6.4 yards per carry during App State's 3-1 start.