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Monday, September 27, 2010
Pac-10 players of the week

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

UCLA's big win over No. 7 Texas continues to earn kudos as two Bruins earned Pac-10 Player of the Week honors.

Bruins center Ryan Taylor and linebacker Sean Westgate earned offensive and defensive honors, while Stanford place kicker Nate Whitaker earned the nod for special teams.

Taylor, a senior from Denison, Texas, keyed the Bruins running attack that accounted for 264 yards against the nation's No. 1 rushing defense in the 34-12 win at Texas. UCLA’s ground game was instrumental in the Bruins eating up 35:29 on the clock, compared to 24:31 time of possession for Texas. Taylor is the first lineman to earn the Pac-10 weekly offensive honor since Oregon tackle Adam Snyder claimed the award on Sept. 20, 2003.

Westgate, a junior from Oak Park, Calif., collected a career-high and team-high 11 tackles (seven solos) and forced a fumble on a punt to set up UCLA’s first touchdown of the game. The Bruin defense limited Texas to 85 yards rushing and 264 yards passing (85 passing yards came on Texas’ final possession of the game). Westgate leads the team with 32 tackles and ranks tied for seventh in the Pac-10, averaging 8.0 per game.

Whitaker, a senior from San Diego, Calif., matched a single-game Stanford record with five field goals. He was successful on all five attempts: 24, 41, 36, 33, and 29 yards. He added two PATs to tally 17 points in the Cardinal’s 37-14 win at Notre Dame.

Also nominated for offensive player of the week honors were wide receiver Juron Criner of Arizona, and running backs Deantre Lewis of Arizona State and Shane Vereen of California, quarterback Darron Thomas of Oregon, and running backs Stepfan Taylor of Stanford and Stanley Havili of USC. Also nominated on defense were defensive tackle Justin Washington of Arizona, defensive back Chris Conte of California, linebacker Casey Matthews of Oregon, linebacker Shayne Skov of Stanford, and cornerback Nickell Robey of USC. Also nominated for special teams play were punter Trevor Hankins of Arizona State, punter Jackson Rice of Oregon, wide receiver/returner James Rodgers of Oregon State, punter Jeff Locke of UCLA and defensive end Wes Horton of USC.