One of the Big 12's most experienced cornerbacks ... An athletic playmaker who remains a big factor on special teams ... Was a Rivals freshman All-American in 2010 as a kick returner ... Owns the OSU record and is tied for the Big 12 record with five career kickoff returns for touchdowns ... Is second all-time at OSU and in the Big 12 Conference's top 10 with 2,228 kickoff return yards ... At OSU, he trails only Big 12 record holder Perrish Cox, who had 2,804 yards in four seasons ... Honorable mention All-Big 12 in the return game in 2011 ... Will enter the 2013 season second among all active NCAA players with his five kickoff returns for scores ... Has a career return average of 26.5 yards ... Defensive MVP of the 2012 Fiesta Bowl ... Enters his senior season with 26 consecutive starts under his belt at cornerback ... Ranks among the Big 12 Conference's career top 10 with 84 kickoff returns.
Gilbert, a senior cornerback, has six interceptions this season, a mark that leads the Big 12 and ranks fifth nationally. He has two pick-sixes on the year, coming at Iowa State and at Texas. His 11 career interceptions rank him 14th among all active players and his 27 career pass break-ups are the most for any Cowboy. Additionally, he has three non-offensive touchdowns this year, including a 31-yard interception return at Iowa State, a 100-yard kickoff return against Kansas and a 43-yard interception return at Texas. He has eight non-offensive touchdowns in his career.
Returned a kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown against West Virginia ... It was the 12th longest return in OSU history and the second longest in Gilbert's career ... It earned him Big 12 player of the week honors ... Ranked second in the Big 12 and 23rd in the NCAA with a return average of 25.8 yards ... Averaged 25.3 yards in Big 12 play to rank fourth in the league and 23rd in the country ... Was ninth in Big 12 play with nine pass break-ups ... His 827 return yards were the second best total in OSU history ... Ended the season with 63 tackles (fourth on the team) and a team-high nine pass break-ups ... Had a season-high 11 tackles against Oklahoma and eight stops against Texas ... Had seven tackles and broke up a pass at Baylor ... In the bowl win over Purdue he had six tackles and forced a fumble ... Made five tackles against West Virginia, Kansas State and Arizona ... Had tackles for loss against Arizona and OU.
Ended the season with 15 passes defended to rank No. 30 in the country and sixth in the Big 12 ... Five of those defended passes were interceptions (against Oklahoma, Texas A&M, Tulsa, Baylor and Stanford) ... Finished No. 14 nationally with five interceptions ... Recorded 11 tackles at Texas in a game that also saw him return a kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown ... Had nine stops at A&M, along with a pass break-up, a fumble recovery and an interception ... Had a 100-yard kickoff return for a score at Tulsa, joining Barry Sanders as the only other Cowboy to accomplish that feat ... His night against Oklahoma included nine tackles, an interception and two pass break-ups ... His 703 kickoff return yards represent the second best total in OSU history ... Averaged 27.0 yards on kickoff returns as a sophomore to finish No. 12 in the NCAA and tops in the Big 12 ... Had interceptions against the nation's best quarterbacks, including Andrew Luck of Stanford, Robert Griffin of Baylor and Ryan Tannehill of Texas A&M (all top 10 picks in the NFL Draft).
Ended the regular season No. 22 nationally and led the Big 12 with a 26.9-yard average on 26 kick returns ... Had an 89-yard return for a score against Oklahoma and a 93-yard TD return against Baylor ... Was the Big 12 special teams player of the week for his efforts against OU ... Recorded 18 tackles on defense and special teams ... Forced a fumble against OU ... Best tackle day was four against Washington State and three against the Sooners, Kansas and Arizona ... Averaged 6.9 yards on eight punt returns and had a 50-yard return against Nebraska ... One of just nine players in the country with multiple kickoff returns for scores ... Played in every game but Kansas State (injury).
Two-time district MVP at Huntsville HS in Huntsville, Texas, where he was coached by Mitchell Coey and Shane Martin ... SuperPrep all-region pick and ranked by that publication as the No. 51 player in Texas ... Earned postseason honors on both sides of the ball ... Rated by Scout as the No. 41 corner prospect in the country and by Texas Football as one of that state's top 20 quarterbacks ... Rated by Rivals as the No. 60 overall prospect in Texas and No. 26 in the country under the "athlete" heading ... Ran for more than 1,000 yards with nine touchdowns and passed for nearly 800 more as a quarterback during his senior year ... As a junior, he accumulated 785 passing yards and 628 rushing yards ... Also competed in basketball and track.
Justin Rodrell Gilbert was born Nov. 7, 1991, in The Woodlands, Texas ... Son of Iwanna Rolling and Sherman Gilbert ... Majoring in education ... Participated in community service for the City of Huntsville ... His cousin, Fred Gilbert, played for UCLA, then transferred to Houston where he was a standout receiver ... Offer list included Colorado, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas A&M, TCU and Utah.