Tigers named ODAC Players of the Week

Published 11:36 am Thursday, October 27, 2022

Hampden-Sydney College fifth-year quarterback Tanner Bernard (Lynchburg) and junior safety Will Pickren (Mount Pleasant, SC) have been named the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Football Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week, respectively, for week eight of the 2022 season. The duo led the Tigers to a thrilling 44-43 overtime road win at Washington and Lee University on Oct. 22.

Tanner Bernard passed for a game-high 313 yards (31-45) and three touchdowns with no interceptions, adding 32 yards on the ground and one touchdown (game-winner) at W&L. The second-year team captain had a pair of six-yard touchdown passes to senior tight end David Byler, and a five-yard scoring toss to sophomore wide receiver Austin Fernandez, while adding a three-yard rushing touchdown in overtime for the game-winner. Tanner is a two-time conference honoree this season as he was also named the ODAC Offensive Player of the Week for week six.

Bernard leads the ODAC in passing yards (2,200), passing yards per game (366.7), passing touchdowns (20), completions per game (28.5) and total offense (370.3), while second in completion percentage (65.0), passing efficiency (158.1) and passing yards per attempt (8.4), and third in passing yards per completion (12.9). Entering the weekend, he ranked first in NCAA Division III in passing yards per game, while second nationally in completions per game and total offense, fifth in passing yards and 16th in passing touchdowns. The standout signal-caller has passed for over 300 yards 10 times in his H-SC career, including each of his six games played this season-passing for a career-high 452 yards (33-49-0) and five touchdowns vs. Averett on Oct. 15.

Will Pickren posted a game-high and a career-high 22 tackles, including seven solo, along with a quarterback hurry against the Generals. He registered six tackles each in the second and fourth quarters, adding the QB hurry in the third quarter. The 22 tackles are the most in a game this season in the ODAC, and tie for the third-most in Division III (entering the weekend). Will is also a two-time (back-to-back) conference honoree this season as he was named the ODAC Defensive Player of the Week last week (seven), as well.

Pickren leads the ODAC in total tackles (85) and tackles per game (12.1), is tied for third in interceptions (2), tied for sixth in forced fumbles (1), tied for 14th in tackles for loss (5), and tied for 23rd in pass breakups (2). Entering the weekend, he was tied for 22nd in Division III total tackles and tackles per game. Pickren has made at least 10 tackles in five consecutive games, including a 17-tackle game-four for loss-along with an interception at Bridgewater College on Oct. 1.

H-SC returns home to welcome ODAC member Guilford (NC) College on Saturday, October 29, at 1 p.m. on Fulton Field at Lewis C. Everett Stadium. It’ll be Homecoming Weekend on the Hill for the Tigers.