Orion Stewart named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week

No. 28 senior safety Orion Stewart celebrates with his teammates after intercepting a Mustang throw to run it back for a touchdown. The Bears outlasted the Mustangs 40-13 Saturday at McLane Stadium. Photo Credit: Timothy Hong | Lariat Photographer

Senior safety Orion Stewart was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week by conference officials on Monday.

This is the first time the safety has been named the Defensive Player of the Week, making him the 16th Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week in the school’s history.

Against SMU, Stewart had eight tackles, five on his own, and two interceptions. The second of the two interceptions, which occurred late in the third quarter, led to a 33-yard touchdown return. The Bears came out on top against SMU this past Saturday, 40-13.

Stewart is the only player in the Big 12 with two interceptions. After his 33-yard touchdown return, Stewart brought his total career yardage to 207, putting him fourth on Baylor’s career interception return list, passing Adrian Robinson, Derrick Cash and Thomas Everett.

Senior quarterback Seth Russell had only praise for the Bears’ defense following the game against the Mustangs.

“The defense kept us in the ball game…It shows how hard they’ve been working. They’ve got a chip on their shoulder. They’re going to go into every game with that chip, for sure,” Russell said. “They won the game for us. And Orion falling into the end zone was good; it gave us 20-yards to work with.”

Senior nickelback Patrick Levels also had nothing but positive things to say about Stewart and the defense.

“Orion Stewart with the pick six — that was definitely the play of the game to turn the tide and get us over the hump of playing back and forth with them,” Levels said.

Stewart and the Bears will look to continue to produce as they travel to Houston to take on Rice University at 7 p.m. Friday. The game will be aired on ESPN.