Mountain West Football: MWwire’s Players Of The Month For August/September
Our staff makes its picks for the Mountain West’s top performers in the first month of the 2022 season.
A cut above the rest.
Special Teams Player of August and September
5. Christian Washington, New Mexico (21 points)
The true freshman from San Diego generated a lot of buzz throughout fall camp and he’s brought that onto the field as part of the Lobos’ running back committee and as a kick returner. He averaged 37.4 yards per kick return in four games and returned one from his own end zone for a touchdown against Boise State.
4. Terrell Vaughn, Utah State (23 points)
Vaughn has started to make more noise as a pass catcher in recent weeks, but his biggest contribution to the Aggies in this early season was on special teams. Like Washington, he also hit the afterburners for a long touchdown against Weber State in Week 2 and averaged 35.4 yards on five total returns.
3. Aaron Rodriguez, New Mexico (29 points)
Still among the busiest punters in the country, Rodriguez has taken a step forward with that big workload. He currently ranks first in the Mountain West and 11th among FBS punters with an average of 46 yards per punt, including ten kicks of 50 or more yards and eight which were dropped inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.
2. John Hoyland, Wyoming (37 points)
Hoyland has put last year’s disappointing campaign behind him and, incredibly, connected on more field goals in the first five games of this season than he had in all of 2021. His 12 field goals on 13 tries are three more than any other kicker in the country and that includes a critical 55-yarder against Tulsa.
1. Jordan Byrd, San Diego State (40 points)
Our staff’s preseason pick to be the conference’s special teams player of the year hasn’t let us down and he certainly hasn’t let Aztecs fans down so far in 2022. Byrd had a punt return touchdown against Idaho State in Week 2 and averaged 24 yards per kick return on seven opportunities, doing a lot of heavy lifting to help San Diego State maintain the field position advantage which made last year so successful.
After a quick Idaho State TD, Jordan Byrd @jordanbyrd28 takes a Punt Return to the HOUSE ⚫️🔴🏈 pic.twitter.com/NJkXxCmfXF
— SONS OF MONTEZUMA™ (@sonsofmonty) September 11, 2022