Schaffitzel Earns MVFC Defensive Honors Once Again
Nov. 4, 2012
ST. LOUIS -- Missouri State sophomore safety Caleb Schaffitzel (Fair Grove, Mo.) has been named as the Missouri Valley Football Conference Defensive Player of the Week for the second straight week, the league announced Sunday (Nov. 4).
Schaffitzel is the first MSU player to ever earn the league's top defensive player honor in back-to-back weeks.
In Missouri State's near-upset of No. 1 North Dakota State on Saturday at Plaster Field, he snagged two interceptions, broke two MSU records and tallied 10 total tackles. He halted an NDSU drive late in the first quarter with a goal-line interception he returned 100 yards for the game's first score, making him just the fifth player in MVFC history -- and second this year -- to record a 100-yard interception return. It was also the longest interception return in Missouri State history.
Later, in the second quarter, Schaffitzel grabbed another pick, and returned it 27 yards to complete his second multiple-interception game in as many weeks and fifth pick in three games. He shattered the MSU single-season record for interception return yardage (216) and moved into second place on the Bears' career chart for INT yardage.
The remarkable effort by Schaffitzel against the top-ranked Bison also marked his fifth double-figure tackle game of the season and pushed him over 100 tackles on the season. He is just the second MSU player since 2005 to hit triple digits in season tackles.
Also recognized by the MVFC on Sunday were RB Jamaine Cook of Youngstown State (Offensive Player of the Week); LB T.J. Lally of South Dakota State (Newcomer of the Week); and PK Justin Syrovatka of South Dakota State (Special Teams Player of the Week).
Since The Valley began issuing weekly performance awards in 1985, Preston Estes (1985), Matt Soraghan (1987), Adrion Smith (1991), Waylon Richardet (2009) and Schaffitzel are the only Bears to win Defensive Player of the Week honors twice in the same season. No MSU player has won Defensive Player of the Week honors three times in the same campaign.
The Bears (3-7, 3-4 MVFC) will have this week off before concluding their 2012 season at Northern Iowa (3-6, 2-4) on Nov. 17 in Cedar Falls. MSU currently sits alone in sixth place in the 10-team conference with two weeks remaining.