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Govs’ Smith named OVC Defensive Player of Week

APSU Athletics Communications

By Cody Bush

APSU Athletics Communications

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Austin Peay defensive lineman Josephus Smith had two sacks and led a defensive front that held UT Martin to minus-25 yards rushing, earning the Ohio Valley Conference’s Defensive Player of the Week honor, Sunday.

Smith, a redshirt junior from Leeds, Alabama, recorded a sack for the fifth time in an OVC contest and for the fourth consecutive game. All three of his tackles against the Skyhawks came behind the line of scrimmage, totaling 2.5 tackles for loss.

The OVC leader in tackles for loss this season, Smith has 14.5 tackles for loss and his 1.45 tackles for loss per game ranks 28th among all FCS defenders. He has 5.5 sacks in 2019 and his 0.55 sacks per game is third best in the OVC and 73rd in the FCS.

Smith leads a defensive unit that ranks sixth nationally in rushing defense, limiting opponents to 83.9 yards per game in 10 outings. Saturday’s minus-25 yard outing against UT Martin was the third best rushing defensive effort in 2019.

Austin Peay sits atop the OVC standings with two-regular season weeks remaining. The Govs return to action with the First Financial Battle of the Border contest against Murray State scheduled for a noon, Saturday kickoff.

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