Bailey's blocks earns USA South Special Teams Player of the Week

Bailey's blocks earns USA South Special Teams Player of the Week

Maryville College's Michael Bailey was named the USA South Special Teams Player of the Week, as the junior blocked both an extra point and a field goal in Maryville's 34-9 victory over Methodist University.

Bailey – a defensive back for the Scots – also added four tackles with a pair of tackles for loss in the victory. He amassed 12 yards of losses for the Monarchs on his pair of stops behind the line.

Three of Bailey's four stops on the day ranked as solo tackles.

"It inspires me to walk out there and see Mike do what he does," Head Coach Shaun Hayes said. "He's playing confident. He's going, and he's listening. He's coachable. He's leading. There's some big things ahead for Mike, and I'm very, very proud for him."

The Antioch, Tenn. native helped the Scots to a 10-9 halftime advantage after he blocked Hunter Baldwin's extra point attempt. Steve Keoni tossed a 60-yard pass to J. Carter with 2:49 left to take a 9-3 lead. Bailey stepped up, blocking the extra point attempt, but his return attempt as short of a two-point play.

Maryville used that momentum to march on an 11-play, 71-yard drive over the final 2:49. Freshman quarterback Nelson Smith – who earned USA South Offensive Rookie of the Week – connected with Clayton Ogle from 10 yards out as the half ran out. Ian Hubbs' kick attempt was good, as Bailey's block allowed a 10-9 advantage.

Maryville outscored Methodist 24-0 in the second half for the USA South Athletic Conference victory. The 5-foot-11, 165-pound defensive back was crucial in that, as he thwarted the Monarchs' best opportunity in the fourth quarter.

Methodist used a six-play, 51-yard drive to the Scots' 10-yard line. MC held strong to force fourth-and-goal, before Baldwin stepped on for the 28-yard field goal attempt. Bailey blocked the kick, as Jeremy Hardnett scooped it for the Scots.

"That's huge," Hayes said. "It shuts down all momentum at that point for them. We've had enough blocked on us this year that we needed to give some back out. The thing I love about it is that we're not taking any play off. They're enjoying playing this game with each other, and any moment it is snapped, here we come. As long as we continue to do that, we've got a chance to be pretty good for the rest of this year."

That block set Maryville up, as they needed just two plays to cover the 42 yards. Marcus Pierce crossed the final 39 yards to give MC a 27-9 lead.

Bailey's late block aided the Scots in scoring 31 unanswered points in the contest.

On the season, this Antioch High product leads the squad with 21.0 tackles – 18 of those going down as solo stops. Bailey averages 4.2 tackles per game, as he's had three tackles for a loss of 14 yards. He has a pair of turnovers in a forced fumble and an interception, while the junior has also recorded a fumble recovery. He leads Maryville with five pass breakups and a pair of blocked kicks.

In Bailey's career, the defensive back has 47 total tackles. In all, he has 34 solo stops.

Bailey will look to lead a Scots' defense that has allowed just 25 points in USA South play into another conference matchup this weekend. Maryville takes on LaGrange College on Saturday, Oct. 20. Kickoff is slated for 2:00 p.m.