Utah Safety Sione Vaki Named Paul Hornung Player Of Week

Oct 17, 2023, 10:39 AM

Sione Vaki Utah Football Paul Hornung Award...

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - OCTOBER 14: Sione Vaki #28 of the Utah Utes rushes the ball for a touchdown against the California Golden Bears during the second half of their game at Rice-Eccles Stadium October 14, 2023 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images)

(Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – After a dominant game on both offense and defense, Utah safety Sione Vaki was named the Paul Hornung Award National Player of the Week.

The Paul Hornung Award is given to the most versatile player in college football.

Due to injuries stacking up for the Utes, Vaki stepped in and played running back for Utah against the Cal Golden Bears last week.

Vaki posted 15 carries for 158 yards and two touchdowns.

Vaki added four total tackles on the other end.

The Utes struggled to build momentum through the air against Cal so they leaned on what they do best. Running the ball.

Utah had 128 passing yards and 317 rushing yards.

Vaki accounted for nearly half of the Utes yards on the ground.

Utah Football Runs Up Latest AP Top 25 Poll

The Utah Utes made another run up the latest AP Top 25 football poll after a strong performance against the Cal Golden Bears out of their BYE weekend.

The Utes spent their downtime getting healthier and improving their offense and it showed in Saturday’s contest. Particularly impressive was Utah’s run game which had mostly been MIA this season due to injuries either taking key player out or slowing them down.

Utah will have to keep the performance up and build on it however as they now turn their attention to a big Top 25 Showdown this week in Los Angeles against USC.

Utah started the season at No. 14, moving up to No. 12 in weeks two and three then climbing up to No. 11, and finally No. 10 before hitting a setback against Oregon State that dropped them to No. 18. Utah’s position improved to No. 16 without playing in Week 6 and jumped once more after their game against Cal to No. 14.


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The Utes are joined by six other conference-mates in the latest AP Top 25.

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Chandler Holt is a co-host for the Jazz Notes podcast and a Digital Sports Producer for KSLSports.com, specializing in all things basketball and football. Follow Chandler on Twitter @ChandlerHoltKSL or on Threads @chandlerho1t.

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Utah Safety Sione Vaki Named Paul Hornung Player Of Week