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Gatorade National Football Player of the Year: Garrett Gilbert

December 9, 2008

AUSTIN, Texas, Dec. 9 /PRNewswire/ — In its third decade of honoring the
nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in partnership with
ESPN RISE Magazine, today announced senior quarterback Garrett Gilbert of Lake
Travis High School (Austin, Texas) as its 2008-09 Gatorade National Football
Player of the Year. Gilbert is the first-ever player from the state of Texas
to win Gatorade National Football Player of the Year honors.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but
also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character
demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Gilbert as the nation’s best
high school football player. A national advisory board comprised of
sportswriters and sport-specific experts from around the country helped to
select Gilbert from more than one million high school football players
nationwide. Gilbert is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade Male High
School Athlete of the Year Award, to be presented at a special afternoon
ceremony prior to The ESPY Awards in July.

The 6-foot-4, 205-pound senior quarterback has completed 256-of-372 passes
for 4,231 yards and 48 touchdowns against just five interceptions this season
for the Cavaliers (14-0) entering the Class 4A Division I semifinals against
Friendswood scheduled for Dec. 13. A 2009 Under Armour All-American and 2008
Elite 11 quarterback camp selection, Gilbert had also rushed for 557 yards and
18 touchdowns on 84 carries at the time of his selection.

A returning Class 4A First Team All-State selection as named by the Texas
Sports Writers Association, he has completed 849-of-1,304 passes for 11,918
yards and 129 touchdowns in his career through 14 games this year. He ranks
second in the state all-time (to former Ennis High and current Texas Tech
senior quarterback Graham Harrell) in career passing touchdowns, and (to
former Baytown Lee High and current Saskatchewan Roughriders quarterback Drew
Tate
) in passing attempts and passing completions.

The son of former NFL quarterback Gale Gilbert, Garrett has maintained a
3.78 GPA in the classroom. He has volunteered extensively as part of the Lake
Hills Church community’s vacation bible school and weekly youth group, as well
as for Lake Travis Pop Warner Football and the Lake Travis Youth Association.

“He’s on another level,” said Chris Ross, head coach of rival Cedar Park
High. “I’ve coached 14 years and I’ve coached kids who’ve gone on to play in
the NFL and against kids who’ve gone on to play in the NFL and I’ve never been
on a football field with a player like him before. I’ve met him personally and
got to talk to him a number of times and you can tell immediately that he’s
unique. He’s unbelievably impressive as a person and as a quarterback.”

Gilbert has verbally committed to a football scholarship at the University
of Texas
next fall.

“Without question, Garrett is deserving of recognition as the nation’s
best high school football player based on his statistics on the field and the
impact his play has had on Lake Travis’ success,” said Gatorade Senior Vice
President of Sports Marketing Jeff Urban. “But he is also a shining example to
peers and aspiring young players of what a leader and a student-athlete should
be. He represents everything we hope for in a Gatorade Player of the Year
recipient.”

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in
the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school
football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls
basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls
track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The
selection process is administered by ESPN RISE Magazine, which works with top
sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran
prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.

For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination
information and lists of past winners and future announcement dates, visit
gatorade.com/playeroftheyear.


           ALL-TIME GATORADE NATIONAL FOOTBALL PLAYERS OF THE YEAR

    YEAR           NAME                     HIGH SCHOOL            STATUS
    2008-09        Garrett Gilbert      Lake Travis HS/          High School
                                        Austin, TX               Senior

    2007-08        Matt Barkley         Mater Dei HS/            High School
                                        Santa Ana, CA            Senior

    2006-07        John Brantley        Trinity Catholic HS/     University
                                        Ocala, FL                of Florida

    2005-06        Mitch Mustain        Springdale HS/           University
                                        Springdale, AR           of Southern
                                                                 California

    2004-05        Greg Paulus          Christian Brothers       Duke
                                        Academy/                 University
                                        Syracuse, NY             (Basketball)

    2003-04        Jeff Byers           Loveland HS/             University
                                        Loveland, CO             of Southern
                                                                 California

    2002-03        Kyle Wright          Monte Vista HS/          NFL Free
                                        Danville, CA             Agent

    2001-02        Lorenzo Booker       St. Bonaventure HS/      Philadelphia
                                        Ventura, CA              Eagles

    2000-01        Joe Mauer            Cretin-Derham Hall/      Minnesota
                                        St. Paul, MN             Twins

    1999-00        Brock Berlin         Evangel Christian        St. Louis
                                        Academy/Shreveport, LA   Rams

    1998-99        Chris Lewis          Polytechnic HS/          Retired from
                                        Long Beach, CA           NFL Europe

    1997-98        Ronald Curry         Hampton HS/              Oakland
                                        Hampton, VA              Raiders

    1996-97        Travis Minor         Catholic HS/             St. Louis
                                        Baton Rouge, LA          Rams

    1995-96        Tim Couch            Leslie County HS/        NFL Free
                                        Hyden, KY                Agent

    1994-95        Brock Huard          Puyallup HS/             Retired from
                                        Puyallup, WA             NFL

    1993-94        Peyton Manning       Isidore Newman School/   Indianapolis
                                        New Orleans, LA          Colts

    1992-93        Ron Powlus           Berwick HS/              University
                                        Berwick, PA              of Notre
                                                                 Dame (Coach)

    1991-92        Chris Walsh          Cretin-Derham Hall/      Retired from
                                        St. Paul, MN             NFL

    1990-91        Marquette Smith      Winter Park HS/          Osceola
                                        Lake Howell, FL          Ghost Riders
                                                                 (Coach)

    1989-90        Robert Smith         Euclid HS/Euclid, OH     Retired from
                                                                 NFL

    1988-89        Terry Kirby          Tabb HS/Tabb, VA         Retired from
                                                                 NFL

    1987-88        Curtis Bray          Gateway HS/              Temple
                                        Monroeville, PA          University
                                                                 (Coach)

    1986-87        Emmitt Smith         Escambia HS/             Retired from
                                        Pensacola, FL            NFL

    1985-86        Jeff George          Warren Central HS/       Retired from
                                        Indianapolis, IN         NFL

SOURCE Gatorade


Source: newswire