Nov. 7, 2011
Rice senior Nick Fanuzzi, who made a memorable return to the starting lineup while leading the Owls to a 41-37 win over UTEP has been named the Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week and was also recognized by the Manning Award as one of its eight "Stars of the Week".
The C-USA Defensive Player of the Week honor went to Tulsa junior LB Curnelius Arnick. Special Teams recognition went to Southern Miss junior PR Tracey Lampley, who scored one of the Golden Eagles four non-offensive touchdowns in a win at East Carolina. C-USA Football Players of the Week are voted on by a panel of the league's media.
Fanuzzi set career highs with 405 yards passing, 30 completions and 439 yards of total offense, while throwing three touchdowns to lead Rice to its seventh consecutive Homecoming victory. He led a fourth quarter rally as the Owls overcame a 31-27 deficit by completing 9-of-14 passes for 148 yards and rushing for 25 more. His six-yard TD pass to Jordan Taylor midway through the quarter put the Owls back on top and his 23-yard scoring pass to Randy Kitchens with less than four minutes to go gave the Owls a 10-point cushion.
Fanuzzi became just the third Rice quarterback to throw for more than 400 yards in a game, and his total ranks fourth in school history. He became the second Owl to top 400 yards in total offense in a game and his final total tied Chase Clement for sixth on the single game chart (Clement owns the other five). On the day, Fanuzzi helped lead the Owls to the third-highest offensive output in school history with 671 yards.