Jan. 11, 2012
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue football program wrapped up the 2011 season with the team and individual statistical champions in kickoff return average amongst all Football Bowl Subdivision teams and players.
Averaging a school-record 28.7 yards per return, the team title is the first for any Purdue squad on a nationwide scale since the 1954 Boilermakers led the NCAA in passing offense (177.3), and is merely the third team title in school history (also passing defense in 1941). TCU finished second to Purdue in KOR in 2011 with an average of 28.2 yards per return, while UCF finished third at 26.9.
Individually, Raheem Mostert wrapped up his true freshman season averaging an FBS-best 33.5 yards per return, over a full yard better than second-place finisher John Evans of Western Kentucky. Mostert scored on a 99-yard return against Western Michigan in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl on Dec. 27 and finished with seven returns of 39 or more yards, including an 81-yarder at Indiana and a 74-yarder at Wisconsin. Against the Badgers, he racked up 206 yards on five kickoff returns to break 42-year old school records for total yardage and average yards per return.
Mostert's individual title marks a third consecutive year that a Boilermaker has led the nation in a statistical category. All-American defensive end Ryan Kerrigan's led the FBS in fumbles forced in 2009 and tackles for loss in 2010.