Dimke, Young Earn Weekly Big Ten Honors

Dimke was a Lou Groza Award Semifinalist in 2010.
Dimke was a Lou Groza Award Semifinalist in 2010.

Sept. 26, 2011

University of Illinois senior kicker Derek Dimke and freshman running back Donovonn Young earned weekly Big Ten honors following Illinois' 23-20 win over Western Michigan on Saturday. Dimke was named Special Teams Player of the Week and Young was named Freshman of the Week after they helped the Illini improve to 4-0 for the first time in 60 years.

Dimke made all three of his field goal attempts, including the game-winner in the fourth quarter, and made both of his PAT attempts for 11 total points against the Broncos. The Lou Groza Award candidate hit from 39, 35 and 21 yards to stay perfect on the season. Dimke has made all six of his field goals this season and has made nine straight dating back to last season, which is tied for the fifth-longest field goal streak in school history. He currently is Illinois' career field goal percentage leader (.875) and is a perfect 70-of-70 PATs in his career. It is Dimke's third career Big Ten weekly honor and his first this season.

Young had the first 100-yard rushing game of his career and became the first Illini freshman running back since 2008 to break the century mark with 100 yards on 12 carries (8.3 ypc) against the Broncos. He had a career-long 59-yard run and a 14-yard touchdown scamper in the third quarter. Young is the second Illini to earn conference Freshman of the Week honors this season, joining linebacker Houston Bates, who was recognized after the week one win over Arkansas State.

Other Big Ten weekly honorees this week include Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson (co-offensive), Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin (co-offensive) and Iowa defensive tackle Tom Nardo (defensive).

The 24th-ranked Illini open Big Ten play this Saturday, Oct. 1, when in-state rival Northwestern comes to Memorial Stadium for Homecoming (11 a.m. CDT, BTN). Tickets are available at