Nelson is Chosen NWC Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week

Leads Bearcats with 14 Total Tackles in win over Pirates

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University sophomore inside linebacker Jack Nelson (So., ILB, Portland, OR/Jesuit HS) has been named Northwest Conference Football Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week for his efforts as the Bearcats defeated Whitworth University, 38-24, in Spokane, Wash., on Saturday, Oct. 6. By prevailing in the battle of undefeated teams, Willamette upped its record to 5-0, 1-0 in the NWC.

Nelson, normally a back-up at inside linebacker, played most of the game against Whitworth after senior starter Wes Wenzel (Sr., ILB, Portland, OR/Sunset HS) had to leave the field due to an injury.

After entering the game, Nelson responded by leading the Bearcats with 14 total tackles, including a team-high 12 solo stops, plus one pass break-up. He provided Willamette with momentum at the start of the second half, when he made a jarring tackle on Whitworth's kickoff return to open the third quarter.

The combined efforts of Nelson and the rest of the Willamette defense helped the Bearcats limit Whitworth to just 168 yards during the final two quarters. Willamette, which trailed 17-14 at halftime, outscored the Pirates 24-7 in the second half to rally for the win. Whitworth fell to 5-1 overall, 1-1 in the NWC.

For the season, Nelson is Willamette's third-leading tackler with 28 total tackles. He has earned 18 solo tackles and 10 assists. He has registered one interception and two pass break-ups.

Willamette will host NWC rival Lewis & Clark College this weekend at McCulloch Stadium. Kickoff on Saturday, Oct. 13 is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. (PDT). Lewis & Clark is currently 4-1 on the season, including 1-1 in the NWC.

Jack Nelson (#55)  finished the game against Whitworth with a team-high 14 total tackles, including 12 solo stops.

Jack Nelson (#55) finished the game against Whitworth with a team-high 14 total tackles, including 12 solo stops.