Sept. 28, 2009
Sophomore safety Earl Thomas has been named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week for games played on Sept. 26, the conference office has announced.
Texas has now claimed the honor three consecutive weeks with three different players (LB Roddrick Muckelroy, Sept. 19; DT Lamarr Houston, Sept. 12), the first time one school has done so in any category in Big 12 history.
It is only the fifth time one school has been honored in the same category three consecutive weeks overall, but the second for Texas with RB Ricky Williams named Offensive Player of the Week three straight in 1998.
Thomas led a UT defense that held UTEP to just 53 yards on 51 plays in a 64-7 win, including holding the Miners without an offensive touchdown for the first time since 2003.
The Orange, Texas native hauled in two interceptions and added a solo tackle as the Horns posted the top total yardage differential on UT record of 586 yards (639 gained/53 allowed). Both of Thomas' interceptions came in the first half and led to a touchdown and a field goal attempt as Texas ran out to a 47-7 halftime lead.
Thomas, who was named first-team Freshman All-America last season, has started all four games this season and posted 16 tackles (11 solo), three INTs and six PBU. For his career, Thomas has started all 17 games over the past two seasons and posted 88 tackles (62 solo), three TFL, five INTs, 23 PBU and four forced fumbles.