Kelley named CFPA FCS National Performer of the Week

Published 10:09 am Monday, November 15, 2021

After helping No. 13 Southeastern Louisiana University to a 56-28 Southland Conference victory over Northwestern State, SLU senior quarterback Cole Kelley was named the College Football Performance Awards FCS National Performer of the Week for Week 11 in an announcement by CFPA on Sunday.

Kelley received the honor for the second time this season, having previously received the honor back on Oct. 10. The Lafayette, Louisiana native is one of four players to earn the award twice this fall, along with fellow quarterbacks Eric Barriere of Eastern Washington, Matt Corral of Ole Miss (FBS) and Caleb Williams of Oklahoma (FBS).

Kelley (19-for-22), Eli Sawyer (4-for-4) and Cephus Johnson III (2-for-2) combined to set a new single-game school completion percentage mark, as the Lions connected on 89.3 percent of their passes in the win over the Demons. Kelley made his mark in just over a half of play, as the first drive of the third quarter was his last action of the night.

He threw for 363 yards and four touchdowns with his last scoring throw matching former Lion Martin Hankins for the single-season school record. Kelley also rushed for his team-high 13th touchdown of the season.

The national leader in completion percentage, passing efficiency, passing yards, points responsible for and total offense, Kelley has completed 303-of-410 passes for 3,997 yards, 35 touchdowns and six interceptions. The reigning Walter Payton Award winner is the only player in FCS who ranks in the national top 10 in both passing (2nd) and rushing (8th) touchdowns.

Protected by a stalwart offensive line and gifted with a vast stable of playmakers to get the ball to, Kelley has led a Southeastern offense that leads the nation in scoring offense (48.6 ppg), third down conversion percentage (55.0), completion percentage (73.6), first downs (302) and team passing efficiency (181.31), while ranking second in total offense (574.1 ypg), passing offense (416.6 ypg) and tackles for loss allowed (3.20).

Kelley and the Lions will have a chance to clinch at least a share of the Southland Conference championship on Thursday, when it hosts Nicholls for the River Bell Classic at 6 p.m. in Strawberry Stadium. Kelley will be one of the members of the senior class that will be honored approximately 30 minutes before kickoff.

The game will be televised on ESPN+ and can be heard in the Hammond area on Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and The Boss 103.7 FM/1400 AM, as well as online at www.kajun107.net.

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