Coleman Earns National Defensive Award

Nov. 11, 2003

PULLMAN, Wash. --- Washington State free safety Erik Coleman was named the Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week Tuesday for his performance in the Cougars' 31-13 win over UCLA last weekend.

Coleman, a 5-10, 205-pound senior, recorded 10 tackles, forced two fumbles, intercepted two passes, and broke up a third against the Bruins. His first forced fumble came at the end of a 29-yard punt return by UCLA's Craig Bragg. The ball was recovered by teammate Jeremy Bohannon, who returned it 72 yards to the Bruin 12-yard line to set up a Cougar touchdown.

Coleman earned both Pac-10 defensive and special teams Player of the Week Monday, becoming the first player in conference history to accomplish that feat.

The Spokane, Wash., native became the first Cougar to earn the Nagurski honor since free safety Lamont Thompson in 2001. Thompson also won the award following a victory over UCLA.

Coleman will be added to the watch list for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, which goes annually to the best defensive player in college football. It will be presented Dec. 8 in Charlotte, N.C. by the FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club.

Coleman leads Washington State with 69 tackles on the season and is tied for the team lead with six interceptions.

Washington State will play its final game at home this season Saturday against Arizona State.

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