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MU Notebook: Cato named player of the week

Nov. 06, 2012 @ 12:24 AM

Marshall quarterback Rakeem Cato shared Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week honors for his performance Saturday against Memphis.

Cato was 34 of 44 passing for 341 yards and four touchdowns with no turnovers in the Thundering Herd's 38-28 win over the Tigers.

It is the first offensive player of the week honor for the sophomore and the second for the Herd this season. Teammate Tommy Shuler received the honor Oct. 1 after catching 19 passes for 200 yards against Purdue.

Cato shared the award with East Carolina quarterback Shane Carden who also had a solid game, going 31 of 43 for 305 yards and four touchdowns in the Pirates' 48-28 win over Houston.

Cato's biggest pass of the game was his final one -- a 28-yard scoring toss to Davonte Allen on fourth-and-6 to push the lead to its final margin. On the play, Cato audibled after seeing that Shuler, the primary receiver, was being double covered. He then fired a perfect strike down the left sideline to Allen for the 28-yard score.

Cato leads FBS quarterbacks in completions (318) and passing yards (3,290). He is also fourth in total offense (3,292 yards) and fifth in touchdown passes (27).

With Saturday's performance, Cato has 500 career completions, becoming just the sixth Marshall quarterback to ever reach the mark.

His 27 touchdown passes are the ninth-best single-season mark in Marshall history, and he has three games remaining in the regular season.

Cato and the Herd return to action against UAB at 4:30 p.m., Saturday, at Legion Field in Birmingham, Ala.

TOP PASS CATCHERS: The Herd's Tommy Shuler is ranked third nationally with 9.1 receptions per game. Tavon Austin of West Virginia is first with 10.6 followed by Marqise Lee of Southern Cal with 9.8.

STOPPER: UAB linebacker Marvin Burdette made 11 tackles Saturday in a 27-19 victory at Southern Miss. Burdette is ranked second among FBS players with 115 tackles, trailing Toledo linebacker Dan Molls with 116.

REAVES' LEGACY: UAB running back Darrin Reaves rushed for 223 yards last week, including 169 in the second half. Reaves is actually Darrin Reaves Jr. His father, Darrin Reaves Sr., also lettered in football as a running back in 1991, making them the first father/son legacy for UAB in football.

Grant Traylor is a reporter for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact him at 304-526-2759 or gtraylor@herald-dispatch.com. Follow him on Twitter (@GrantTraylor).

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