USU football: Governor’s State of Sport Awards voting ends Thursday, April 11

By Doug Hoffman

For the Deseret News

Published: Wednesday, April 10 2013 11:15 a.m. MDT

Voting for the Governor's State of Sport Awards will conclude Thursday, April 11, at midnight. Fans have just two days to determine who will be this year's winners.

The nine award categories include High School Female Athlete, High School Male Athlete, Collegiate or Pro Female Athlete, Collegiate Male Athlete, Pro Male Athlete, Team of the Year, Highlight of the Year, Game or Event of the Year and Coach of the Year.

Category winners will be announced at the Governor's State of Sport Awards luncheon on Tuesday, April 16. In addition, a Lifetime Achievement award will be presented to Spencer F. Eccles, a "Team Utah" Partner of the Year award will be presented to the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association, and an Olympian of the Year award will be presented to ski jumper Sarah Hendrickson. Tennis legend Andre Agassi will be the guest speaker.

Utah State football has several nominees for the second annual Utah Governor’s State of Sports Awards. USU’s record setting football team has been nominated for Team of the Year; junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton is a candidate for College Male Athlete of the Year; and former USU head football coach Gary Andersen is a candidate for Coach of the Year.

Utah State had its most successful season in school history in 2012 as it went 11-2 and set school records for wins and home wins, while recording just its second bowl win in school history with a 41-15 victory against Toledo in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. USU also won its first outright conference championship since 1936 and just its third in school history.

Nationally, Utah State was one of just 19 teams to finish the 2012 season with 11 or more wins, and USU was one of just four teams across the country who did not lose a league game.

Utah State ended the 2012 season nationally ranked for just the third time in school history as it finished the year ranked 16th in the Associated Press poll, 17th in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll and 22nd in the Bowl Championship Series standings.

Keeton, a 6-foot-2, 200 pound quarterback from Houston, Texas (Cypress Creek HS), earned first-team all-Western Athletic Conference honors as a sophomore after ranking 17th nationally in total offense (307.1 ypg), 18th in passing efficiency (154.7) and 29th in passing (259.5 ypg).

During the 2012 season, Keeton set single-season school records for touchdown passes (27), passing yards (3,373), completions (275) and completion percentage (.676). He also set the single-game record for rushing yards by a quarterback with 121 yards at Louisiana Tech.

Along with earning first-team all-league honors as a sophomore, Keeton was also named the WAC’s Offensive Player of the Week four times during the course of the season as he had at least two touchdown passes in 10 games and rushed for a touchdown in eight games. He also threw for at least 300 yards three times in the last five games of the season and five times overall.

In all, Keeton concluded his sophomore season completing 275-of-407 passes for 3,373 yards with 27 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He also ran the ball 129 times for 619 yards (47.6 ypg) with eight touchdowns.

Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.

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