Willie VanDeSteeg Named Big 10 Defensive POW

Willie VanDeSteeg wins Big 10 Defensive Award

Posted Nov 13, 2006

Gopher defensive end Willie VanDeSteeg was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week as he helped keep Minnesota’s bowl dreams alive by matching a school record and setting a career high with four sacks in a road victory at Michigan State. The junior defensive end posted five solo stops on the day, with four of them coming on quarterback hits which led to a loss of 33 yards.

Willie VanDeSteeg finished with four sacks, which ranked as the third-highest single-game total in Big Ten history and equal Karon Riley’s program mark set against Iowa on Nov. 18, 2000.

VanDeSteeg was part of a defensive effort that limited the Spartans to three rushing yards and forced three turnovers. He collects the first Player of the Week honor of his career.

Minnesota finishes the regular season at home versus Iowa. The Gopher need a win to finish 6-6 and become bowl eligible.

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