COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee Tech sophomore Ladarius Vanlier was named Monday as a National Punt Return Performer of the Week by the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) after his electrifying efforts Thursday in the Golden Eagle win over Cumberland.
Vanlier touched the ball only four times in Tech's record-setting, season-opening 63-7 victory over the Bulldogs, and averaged nearly 50 yards per touch while scoring two touchdowns. He raced 93 yards with a punt return for a touchdown, and also had a 52-yard TD run. The Nashville native opened the game with a 44-yard kickoff return to set the tone for the largest opening day margin of victory in school history.
He finished the game with 188 all-purpose yards while playing only the first half of the contest.
Vanlier was one of five punt returners honored Monday by CFPA. Joining the Tech sparkplug on the list of honorees was Dae’Quan Scott (of James Madison, Sheperd Little from Eastern Illinois, Kyle Toulouse of Holy Cross, and Kenny Golladay of North Dakota.
After week one of action, Vanlier leads the nation (FCS) in punt return average with his 93.0 mark. His second quarter return was the longest in school history and the ninth longest scoring play of any type in Tech history
The Golden Eagles (1-0) will visit the University of Wisconsin (1-0) Saturday to face the Badgers. Kickoff in Camp Randall Stadium is at 11 a.m. CDT.