PSU football players honored

Christian Hackenberg’s impressive college debut Saturday against Syracuse earned him the Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor Monday.

Hackenberg wasn’t the only Penn State player recognized by the conference as place-kicker Sam Ficken was named Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week.

Hackenberg completed 22-of-31 passes for 278 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions in the Nittany Lions’ 23-17 win. He threw a 54-yard TD pass to Geno Lewis and a 51-yard catch-and-run TD to Allen Robinson.

His 278 yards were just 2 shy of the school record by a freshman quarterback. Zack Mills threw for 280 twice in 2001.

Ficken also was a big reason why Penn State prevailed as he made three field goals, including a career-long 46-yarder. He also booted kicks of 35 and 36 yards and has made 13 consecutive field goals going back to last season.

Ficken has won the league’s special teams honor twice now. He also was recognized following last year’s season finale against Wisconsin.

– Cory Giger