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Gipson Repeats As WAC Offensive Player Of The Year To Highlight 2022 Football Awards

Gipson Repeats As WAC Offensive Player Of The Year To Highlight 2022 Football Awards

ARLINGTON, Texas – The Western Athletic Conference (WAC) announced the major award winners and all-conference teams from the 2022 football season on Tuesday. The awards were voted on by each of the league’s six head coaches.

Stephen F. Austin’s Xavier Gipson repeated as the WAC Offensive Player of the Year, while Sam Houston’s Kavian Gaither captured WAC Defensive Player of the Year. Southern Utah’s Jake Gerardi was tabbed the WAC Special Teams Player of the Year and Tarleton’s Beau Allen was selected as the WAC Newcomer of the Year. Abilene Christian’s Keith Patterson was named WAC Coach of the Year.

Gipson, a senior wide receiver, was the first repeat winner of the offensive player of the year award in the WAC since Boise State’s Kellen Moore in 2009-10. Gipson became just the eighth player in league history to win top offensive player honors back-to-back, joining BYU’s Virgil Carter (1965-66), Jim McMahon (1980-81), Steve Young (1982-83) and Ty Detmer (1990-91), TCU’s LaDainian Tomlinson (1999-00), Hawai’i’s Colt Brennan (2006-07) and Moore. Gipson led the WAC with 1,486 all-purpose yards, which included a conference-high 276 punt return yards and added 1,163 receiving yards to rank second in the league. Gipson’s nine total touchdowns (seven receiving, two punt returns) were tied for third among all WAC players.

Gaither, a sophomore linebacker, led the WAC with 8.8 tackles per game and was fifth in the conference with 79 total tackles across just nine games played. Gaither added 3.0 sacks, 12.0 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries to his 2022 stat line. Gather had 10 or more tackles in each of the final four games of the season, which included 11 stops, 4.0 TFL and 2.0 sacks at Utah Tech on Oct. 22 to win WAC Defensive Player of the Week honors.

Gerardi, a redshirt senior punter, was one of the top players at the position nationally throughout the regular season. Gerardi led the WAC and the FCS with a 48.0 yards per punt average over 52 attempts, with a conference-high 20 punts covering 50 or more yards. Gerardi also ranked second in the conference with 18 punts landing inside the opponent’s 20-yard line. Gerardi was the primary kickoff specialist for Southern Utah and notched a touchback on exactly half of his kickoffs, 31-of-62.

Allen, a redshirt freshman quarterback transfer from Kentucky, enjoyed a successful first season under center for Tarleton. Allen paced the WAC with 2,838 passing yards, 258.0 passing yards per game and 23 touchdowns through the air across 11 games. Allen chipped in 110 rushing yards to lead the conference in total offensive yards with 2,948 (268.0 yards per game).

Patterson, in his first season at the helm of a Division I program, led ACU to a 7-4 record (3-1 in the WAC) and a second place finish in the conference standings. The seven wins marked the most for the Wildcats in a single season in the program’s DI era, and ACU posted its best winning percentage overall since 2012 (also 7-4. .636). ACU boasted nine total all-conference selections to go along with the second-ranked defense in the WAC in Patterson’s first season at the helm.

2022 WAC Football Awards

2022 WAC Offensive Player of the Year
Xavier Gipson, Sr., WR, Stephen F. Austin

2022 WAC Defensive Player of the Year
Kavian Gaither, So., LB, Sam Houston

2022 WAC Special Teams Player of the Year
Jake Gerardi, R-Sr., P, Southern Utah

2022 WAC Newcomer of the Year
Beau Allen, R-Fr., QB, Tarleton

2022 WAC Coach of the Year
Keith Patterson, Abilene Christian

2022 All-WAC First Team
QB – Justin Miller, R-Jr., Southern Utah
RB – Jermiah Dobbins, So., Abilene Christian
RB – Quali Conley, So., Utah Tech
WR – Xavier Gipson, Sr., WR, Stephen F. Austin
WR – Darius Cooper, So., WR, Tarleton
WR – Joey Hobert, So., WR, Utah Tech
TE – Chad Aune, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
OL – Reese Moore, So., Abilene Christian
OL – Justice Guillory, Jr., Stephen F. Austin
OL – Lyle Santos, R-So., Southern Utah
OL – Kendall Dearth, Sr., Tarleton
OL – Blake Haynes, Jr., Tarleton

DL – Tyrin Bradley, So., Abilene Christian
DL – Toby Ndukwe, Grad, Sam Houston
DL – BJ Thompson, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
DL – Syrus Webster, So., Utah Tech
LB – Kavian Gaither, So., Sam Houston
LB – Kohner Cullimore, Fr., Southern Utah
LB – Will Leota, So., Utah Tech
LB – Malaki Malaki, Sr., Utah Tech
DB – BJ Foster, Grad, Sam Houston
DB – Myles Heard, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
DB – Donovan Banks, Sr., Tarleton
DB – Tyrell Grayson, So., Utah Tech

K – Chris Campos, So., Stephen F. Austin
P – Jake Gerardi, R-Sr., Southern Utah
RET – Xavier Gipson, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
LS – Brandon Oldham, So., Tarleton

2022 All-WAC Second Team
QB – Trae Self, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
RB – Miles Reed, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
RB – Derrel Kelley III, So., Tarleton
WR – Cody Chrest, Grad, WR, Sam Houston
WR – Isaiah Wooden, R-Jr., WR, Southern Utah
WR – Jaden Smith, Jr., WR, Tarleton
TE – Noah Caldwell, So., Abilene Christian
OL – Jordan Boatman, Grad, Sam Houston
OL – Daniel Keys, So., Stephen F. Austin
OL – Jaret Porterfield, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
OL – Layton Ernst, So., Tarleton
OL – Walter Pongia, Jr., Utah Tech

DL – Ellison Hubbard, Grad, Sam Houston
DL – Edward Bobino, R-Fr., Stephen F. Austin
DL – Amad Murray, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
DL – Payton Payne, So., Southern Utah
LB – Tory Hargrove, Sr., Abilene Christian
LB – Jermaine Brown, So., Stephen F. Austin
LB – Patrick Jones, Jr., Tarleton
LB – Qua’Shawn Washington, Sr., Tarleton
DB – Patrick Jolly, Jr., Abilene Christian
DB – Elijah Moffett, So., Abilene Christian
DB – Bruce Harmon, So., Stephen F. Austin
DB – Rodrick Ward, R-Jr., Southern Utah

K – Seth Morgan, So., Sam Houston
P – Max Quick, Sr., Stephen F. Austin
RET – Davion Johnson, Jr., Abilene Christian
LS – Dustin Inness, Jr., Abilene Christian


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