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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

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Hard work pays off for UofM’s Gibson with draft by Washington

With the 66th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Washington Redskins chose Antonio Gibson, the University of Memphis multiple-offensive threat.

When you play as Antonio Gibson did in the AAC Championship you get the MVP trophy. (Photo: Warren Roseborough)

In Gibson, Washington gets the 2019 American Athletic Conference Special Teams Player of the Year and an all-conference wide receiver. He is the first Tiger selected in this year’s draft.

After two seasons at East Central (Miss.) Community College, Gibson became a two-year letter-winner for the Tigers. This past season he appeared in all 28 games at Memphis with 11 starts.

Gibson caught 44 passes for 834 yards and 10 TDs for the Tigers. That included 38 catches for 735 yards and eight TDs in 2019 while helping Memphis to an AAC Championship and a Goodyear Cotton Bowl appearance.

After playing behind 2019 NFL draftees Darrell Henderson and Tony Pollard, Gibson spent some time at running back in his senior campaign, finishing with 33 rushes for 369 yards and four touchdowns.

He also took over at kickoff return following the graduation of Pollard, who shared the NCAA career KOR touchdown record (7) before being drafted by the Cowboys in 2019. Gibson finished with 24 kickoff returns for 647 yards and one touchdown.

His play at wideout, running back and kickoff return helped Gibson tally 1,749 all-purpose yards in 2019 as a senior, a total that ranks fifth in Memphis history.

He was named the Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week on Nov. 4 after recording 368 all-purpose yards against then-undefeated SMU. In that game, nationally-televised after Memphis hosted ESPN’s GameDay that morning, Gibson scored three touchdowns (one rushing, one receiving and one kickoff return TD).

In the AAC championship game, Gibson finished with 234 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns, including a game-winning, six-yard reception with 1:14 remaining. He was named the AAC Championship MVP for his efforts and helped Memphis earn its first-ever New Year’s Six bowl berth.

In the Cotton Bowl, Gibson finished with 117 all-purpose yards. He completed his collegiate career with an invitation to the Senior Bowl, where he competed as a running back.

GALLERY: Photos by Warren Roseborough

This marks the seventh-straight season Memphis football has had a player drafted.

  • 2020   Antonio Gibson, RB, Washington Redskins, Third Round, Pick 66
  • 2019   Darrell Henderson, RB, Los Angeles Rams, Third Round, Pick 70
  • 2019   Tony Pollard, RB, Dallas Cowboys, Fourth Round, Pick 128
  • 2018   Anthony Miller, WR, Chicago Bears, Second Round, Pick 51
  • 2018   Genard Avery, LB, Cleveland Browns, Fifth Round, Pick 150
  • 2017   Jake Elliott, Place-Kicker, Cincinnati Bengals, Fifth Round, Pick 118
  • 2016   Paxton Lynch, Quarterback, Denver Broncos, First Round, Pick 22
  • 2015   Bobby McCain, Cornerback, Miami Dolphins, Fifth Round, Pick 145
  • 2015   Martin Ifedi, Defensive End, St. Louis Rams, Seventh Round, Pick 227
  • 2014   Lonnie Ballentine, Defensive Back, Houston Texas, Pick 256

Gibson is the fifth Tiger drafted by Washington:

  • 1983 – Richard Williams
  • 1975 – Carl Taylor
  • 1970 – Danny Pierce
  • 1954 – Will Renfro).

Source: -www.gotigersgo.com




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