Williams, Jackson Honored by College Football Performance Awards

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Senior slotback Deonte Williams and senior linebacker Kennith Jackson (pictured above) have been honored by College Football Performance Awards as Cal Poly's top performers in its Big Sky Conference game against Idaho State on Saturday.

Williams broke the 100-yard mark for the ninth time this season and Jackson intercepted two passes in the first 2 1/2 minutes, both setting up one-play scoring drives, as the Mustangs routed the Bengals 70-14 in Alex G. Spanos Stadium.

Williams (5-10, 205, Oakland, Calif./Pleasant Grove HS) rushed for 125 yards on 17 carries, including three touchdown runs of 3, 9 and 44 yards. He broke the Cal Poly record for 100-yard games in a season, which was eight set by James Noble in 2005.

Williams has 1,319 yards yards to date and needs 260 yards to break Noble's school record for rushing yards in a season, also set in 2005.

With his first two thefts of the season, Jackson now has six interceptions in his Cal Poly career.

His first interception on the fourth play of the game resulted in a 48-yard touchdown pass from Andre Broadous to Willie Tucker. Jackson returned the second theft 24 yards to the Idaho State 9-yard line, setting up a nine-yard scoring run by Williams.

Jackson (6-0, 232, Santa Clara, Calif./Archbishop Mitty HS) is Cal Poly's leading tackler this season with 89, lifting his career total to 294 tackles, No. 6 on Cal Poly's all-time list.

Cal Poly (8-2, 6-1 Big Sky) wraps up the regular season Saturday at Northern Arizona (8-2, 6-1 Big Sky) with at least a share of the conference title and an NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision playoff berth at stake.

Kickoff at J. Lawrence Walkup Skydome in Flagstaff is set for 3:05 p.m. PST and the game will be broadcast live by Fox College Sports Pacific, available in San Luis Obispo County on Charter Cable channel 403 and to selected DirecTV subscribers on channel 617, 623 or 626. The telacast will be replayed on Fox Sports Arizona at 9:30 p.m.

In other Cal Poly football news:

• Cal Poly, Northern Arizona, Eastern Washington and Montana State all enter the final weekend of the regular season tied for first place in the Big Sky at 6-1. With Cal Poly and Northern Arizona playing each other Saturday in Flagstaff, as many as three teams could share the conference title.

The Big Sky's automatic bid to the playoffs will go to the Cal Poly vs. Northern Arizona winner if Eastern Washington and Montana State both lose. That is the only way the Mustangs can get the automatic bid as the Mustangs are on the short end of all tiebreakers.

Here are the other tiebreaker scenarios:

If Montana State, Eastern Washington and Cal Poly tie at 7-1, the automatic bid would go to Eastern Washington. All three teams would have played Sacramento State in league games. Cal Poly would be eliminated because of a loss to the Hornets. Montana State and Eastern Washington both beat Sacramento State, so the tiebreaker would revert to the head-to-head meeting between Montana State and Eastern Washington, which the Eagles won.
If Montana State, Eastern Washington and Northern Arizona tie at 7-1, the automatic bid would go to Montana State. All three teams would have played Southern Utah, and Montana State is the only one of the three to have a win over the Thunderbirds.
If Eastern Washington and Cal Poly tie at 7-1, Eastern Washington would get the automatic bid because of a head-to-head win over the Mustangs, even though it was a non-conference game.
If Montana State and Cal Poly tie at 7-1, Montana State would get the automatic bid because of its win over Sacramento State.
If Montana State and Northern Arizona tie at 7-1, Montana State would get the automatic bid because of the Bobcats' win over Southern Utah.
If Eastern Washington and Northern Arizona tie at 7-1, the highest team in the Sagarin Rating would determine the automatic bid.

• With its lopsided win over Idaho State last Saturday, Cal Poly inched up two spots to No. 10 in this week's Gridiron Power Index, which uses seven computer rankings in addition to the Sports Network media and FCS Coaches polls.

Cal Poly has an 11.86 rating in the GPI compiled by College Sporting News. Top-ranked North Dakota State has a 1.00 rating, followed by No. 2 Montana State (2.29) and No. 3 Sam Houston State (3.14).

The Mustangs are No. 17 in the media poll and 18th in the coaches poll this week.

In other rankings, Cal Poly is No. 9 in the Sagarin Rating, No. 12 in the Any Given Saturday poll and No. 16 in the College Sports Madness poll.

The Mustangs are 93rd overall among 246 NCAA Division I football teams in the Sagarin Ratings, ahead of such schools as Washington State, Air Force, Connecticut, Kentucky, Maryland, Rice, Houston, UNLV, Wake Forest, Colorado State, Illinois, UTEP, Army, Colorado and Hawaii.

North Dakota State (9-1) sits atop the Sagarin Ratings among the 121 FCS schools (51st overall), followed by Sam Houston State (8-2, 63rd overall) and Indiana State (7-3, 82nd overall). Indiana State, however, is 18th in this week's media poll and 19th in the coaches poll.