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Senior wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton (Fredericksburg, Va.) and junior running back/kick returner Saquon Barkley (Coplay, Pa.) each claimed Big Ten weekly accolades after stellar performances. Hamilton is the Big Ten Co-Offensive Player of the Week, while Barkley is the Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week. Barkley is the first Big Ten player to earn offensive and special teams honors in the same season since Michigan's Jehu Chesson in 2015.
This is the first offensive honor for Hamilton and third overall as he was a two-time Big Ten Freshman of the Week honoree in 2014. Barkley earns his first special teams accolade and third conference weekly award of the season (2 offensive). He has earned seven conference honors (four offensive, two freshman, one special teams) in his career.
Hamilton, who shares the honor with Felton Davis III of Michigan State, had his best outing of the season with nine catches for 122 yards and three touchdowns. He averaged 13.6 yards per reception in the win over Indiana. The three touchdown catches are a career high for Hamilton and marks the first time a Penn Stater had three scoring grabs in a game since Allen Robinson against Indiana in 2012. With his performance, Hamilton became Penn State's all-time receptions leader, breaking the record held by Deon Butler (179; 2005-08). Hamilton now has 181 career catches. The effort is the sixth 100-yard performance of his career, which ranks sixth in Penn State history.
Barkley ignited the Nittany Lions with a 98-yard touchdown return on the opening kickoff. The return was the first for touchdown by a Penn Stater since Chaz Powell had a 95-yard return against Indiana State in 2011. It was also the longest return for the Nittany Lions since Powell's 100-yard return against Youngstown State in 2010. Offensively, Barkley had 56 rushing yards, 51 receiving yards and 16 passing yards with a passing touchdown to Hamilton. Barkley is the first Big Ten player and the sixth FBS player since 1996 to have a touchdown return and passing touchdown in the same game. Additionally, Barkley is the first player in the last 20 years with 50 rushing yards, 50 receiving yards, a passing touchdown and kickoff return for the touchdown in the same game. Barkley is also the third player in the last five years with a rushing touchdown, receiving touchdown, passing touchdown and special teams touchdown in the same season, joining Joe Mixon from Oklahoma (2016) and Christian McCaffrey from Stanford (2015).
The fourth-ranked Nittany Lions visit Northwestern Saturday at noon on ABC. The game can also be heard on GoPSUsports.com and the Penn State Sports Network.
Single-game tickets for the 2017 Penn State football season presented by PSECU are available for two of the three remaining home games (Rutgers, Nebraska). For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club and purchasing new 2018 season tickets, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.PSUnrivaled.com, call 1-800-NITTANY weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. or visit the Bryce Jordan Center ticket office weekdays from 9 a.m-4:30 p.m. More than 9,000 new season tickets have been sold and the season ticket allotment for 2017 has been exhausted.