Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert A Thorpe Award Finalist

Oklahoma State  enior cornerback Justin Gilbert has been named one of three finalists for the 2013 Jim Thorpe Award, which recognizes the most outstanding defensive back in college football.

Oct 26, 2013; Ames, IA, USA; Oklahoma State Cowboys cornerback Justin Gilbert (4) looks on during the first quarter against the Iowa State Cyclones at Jack Trice Stadium. Oklahoma State defeated Iowa State 58-27. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

The 6-2, 200-pound cornerback leads the Big 12 and ranks fifth nationally with six interceptions this season. Two of his interceptions in 2013 have gone for touchdowns. Gilbert’s 11 career interceptions rank 18th among active players. He has contributed three non-offensive touchdowns this season: a 100-yard kickoff return against Kansas and a 43-yard interception return at Texas. The speedy defensive back has eight non-offensive touchdowns in his career at Oklahoma State.

The other two finalists for this year’s Thorpe Award are Darqueze Dennard of Michigan State and Lamarcus Joyner of Florida State.

Oklahoma State has had four national award winners in football since 2008, all under head coach Mike Gundy. Former Cowboys’ wide receiver Justin Blackmon won the Biletnikoff Award in back-to-back seasons (2010 and 2011); Dan Bailey won the Lou Groza Aeard for placekickers in 2010, and former punter Matt Fodge was the winner of the Ray Guy Award  in 2008.

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