DENVER -- While Western Athletic Conference champion Louisiana Tech led the way with seven first-team all-WAC honorees, the league's coaches recognized Utah State's impact on the season, naming USU's Robert Turbin the league's offensive player of the year, and handing out three additional first team honors to the Aggies.
The awards were voted on by the WAC's eight head coaches.
Turbin was named the offensive player of the year, Louisiana Tech's Adrien Cole earned defensive player of the year honors, and Nevada's Cody Fajardo was named the freshman of the year. Louisiana Tech's Sonny Dykes was voted the WAC's coach of the year.
Joining Turbin on the first team were fellow Aggies Bobby Wagner, and offensive linemen Tyler Larsen and Philip Gapeul.
Turbin, a junior running back from Fremont, Calif., is 10th in the nation in rushing with 118.0 yards per game and is fifth in scoring with 11.5 points per contest. Turbin has rushed for 1,416 yards and 19 touchdowns on 229 attempts for an average of 6.2 yards per carry. He has caught 16 passes for 164 yards and four more touchdowns.
Turbin's 138 points scored this season are currently the seventh most in WAC history. Utah State is making its first bowl appearance since 1997 when it plays Ohio in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise on Dec. 17.
Cole, a senior linebacker from Mobile, Ala., leads the Bulldogs and is third in the WAC in tackles with 10.1 per game.
Fajardo, a freshman quarterback from Brea, Calif., became the starting quarterback for the Wolf Pack in October and has thrown for 1,647 yards and six touchdowns while rushing for 680 yards and 11 more scores.
Dykes earned his first coach of the year award in just his second season as a head coach after leading Louisiana Tech to an 8-4 record and its second WAC title with a 6-1 mark.
A total of three first-team all-WAC players were repeat selections from last year: Wagner, USU's standout linebacker, Fresno State defensive lineman Logan Harrell, and Fresno State placekicker Kevin Goessling. Wagner was named first team for years in a row.
Earning second-team honors for Gary Andersen's Aggies were senior tight end Tarren Lloyd on offense, and senior linebacker Levi Koskan on defense.
* GALLAGHER HONORED: Utah State football player Kyle Gallagher has been named Western Athletic Conference defensive player of the week for his performance in USU's win over New Mexico State Saturday, an award selected and announced by the conference office Monday.
Gallagher, a senior linebacker from Woodland, Calif., was playing with his broken left hand heavily bandaged, but snared his first career interception to thwart New Mexico State's scoring drive late in the first half, and posted five tackles, helping USU to another nail-biting victory with a 24-21 thriller at New Mexico State on Saturday.
The interception by Gallagher was the USU defense's third of the season, and up to that point, all three had been by linebackers until cornerback Nevin Lawson sealed the win with an interception on NMSU's final possession.