Troy Polamalu Named Pac-10 Defensive Player Of Week
Nov. 19, 2001
USC junior safety Troy Polamalu was named the Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Week for his performance against UCLA.
In the Trojans' 27-0 shutout over UCLA, Polamalu intercepted a pass and returned it 36 yards to set up a USC field goal (it was his third pick of 2001 and fifth of his career), blocked a punt to set another field goal (it was his third blocked punt of 2001 and fourth of his career), had 2 tackles and a deflection.
He keyed a Trojan defense which held UCLA to USC-opponent season lows in first downs (10), rushing yardage (28, UCLA's fewest against USC since 1956), total yardage (114, the lowest USC has allowed any opponent since 1988) and plays (55). The shutout was USC's first against UCLA since 1947 and the victory margin was the biggest in the series since 1979.
On the year, Polamalu's other defensive stats include a team-high 98 tackles, with 10 for a loss (with a sack), plus 7 deflections, 2 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery and 2 TDs on interception returns. He is tied for second in the Pac-10 in tackles (8.9).
It was the second Pac-10 Player of the Week honor in 2001 for Polamalu, who won in the Special Teams category for the Oregon State game.
This week, he joined wide receiver Reggie Williams (offense), who had 11 catches in Washington's win over Washington State, and kick returner Steven Jackson (special teams), who had a scoring kickoff runback in Oregon State's victory over Northern Arizona.