FRISCO – The Sam Houston State Bearkats have played just two games, but have already captured three Southland Conference Player of the Week honors after league officials announced Monday morning that Jaylen Harris has been named the Southland Conference Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance in the win over Prairie View.
It is the second such honor for Harris in his career as he earned the same honor as a freshman following the Kats’ win at UIW. Last week senior quarterback Jeremiah Briscoe was named the offensive player of the week and safety Josh Price was the defensive player of the week after the win over Richmond.
Harris picked up his honor due to his 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown on Thursday in Sam Houston’s 44-31 win at Prairie View. The Kats had led by as much as 24-3, but the Panthers were able to score on the final drive of the first half and the first drive of the second half, drawing back to within 30-24.
But Harris took the ensuing kickoff 97 yards up the right sideline for a score, taking the wind out of the Prairie View sails. The touchdown against the Panthers was the fifth-longest in program history and the first kickoff return for a touchdown for Sam Houston since Brandon Closner returned one 82 yards against Montana State in 2011.
The redshirt-sophomore from Cibolo, Texas (Steele HS) was a second team all-SLC kickoff returner last year and was a preseason all-SLC first team selection at the same position coming into 2017.
Harris and the rest of the Bearkats will take in a much-needed bye week this week before opening up Southland Conference play with its first game at Bowers Stadium this season on Sept. 23 against Nicholls.