July 5, 2013
STILLWATER - Oklahoma State cornerback/kick return man Justin Gilbert is on the preseason watch list for the Paul Hornung Award presented to the most versatile player in major college football, it was announced today by the Louisville Sports Commission.
The watch list was compiled by a panel of college football experts based on a combination of 2012 statistics, career performance and expectations heading into the 2013 season.
Gilbert owns the OSU record and is tied for the Big 12 record with five career kickoff returns for touchdowns - a figure that puts him second among all active players. He is a 2013 preseason All-America kick returner by both Athlon Sports and Lindy's.
As a cornerback, Gilbert was the defensive MVP of the 2012 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl and earned second-team All-Big 12 honors as a sophomore in 2011. He enters 2013 with a streak of 26 consecutive starts. His 140 career tackles ranks third on the team.
Gilbert is a key figure for an Oklahoma State defense that ranks second nationally in turnovers forced since 2009 and is second in the Big 12 in fewest explosive plays allowed and fewest yards per play allowed since 2010.
As a sophomore, he logged a career-high five interceptions, highlighted by picks at the expense of Stanford's Andrew Luck, Baylor's Robert Griffin III, Texas A&M's Ryan Tannehill and Oklahoma's Landry Jones.
Gilbert and the Cowboys open the 2013 season on August 31 when they battle Mississippi State in the Texas Kickoff Classic at Houston's Reliant Stadium.