Pipkins Becomes First-Ever USF Player Invited to NFL Combine

SIOUX FALLS – University of Sioux Falls Football All-American offensive tackle Trey Pipkins has become the first-ever USF student-athlete selected to attend the NFL Scouting Combine, according to an announcement from the NFL on Thursday, Feb. 7. Pipkins is one of five former NCAA DII football student-athletes and the only player from the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference selected and will participate in the NFL Scouting Combine on Feb. 26 to March 4 in Indianapolis.

Pipkins of Apple Valley, Minn. (Apple Valley HS), is the first player from the NSIC invited to the NFL Combine since Zach Moore of Concordia St. Paul, in 2013. Moore is now a member of the Arizona Cardinals of the NFL and teammates with former USF All-American Dennis Gardeck.

Besides Pipkins, the other DII football players include Corey Ballentine, a defensive back from Washburn; John Cominsky, a defensive lineman from Charleston (West Virginia); Ashton Dulin, a wide receiver from Malone (Ohio); and Devin Johnson, an offensive lineman from Ferris State. A total of 338 prospects were invited to the NFL Scouting Combine.

"USF Football is thrilled for Trey’s (Pipkins) opportunity to show his skill set and ability to NFL personnel at the 2019 NFL Combine," said USF Head Football Coach Jon Anderson. "I know he will be physically and mentally prepared because that is what we received from him his entire career at USF. What a great thing it is, as one of five D-II participants, to showcase Sioux Falls Football. Trey was blessed with some God-given attributes but what sticks out to me the most is his drive and desire to be great. He has been relentless in this pursuit since I first met him and this is not an end goal but just the beginning of what we hope is a long and successful career," said Anderson.

Pipkins, who was a three-time All-NSIC selection and five-time All-American (three postseason, two preseason) at the DII level, recently received rave reviews when he participated in the 94th annual East-West Shrine Game on Jan. 19 in St. Petersburg, Fla.

One of the nation's top offensive lineman this season, Pipkins is a USF sports management graduate (2018) and played a key role as USF earned three postseason berths and compiled a 37-11 overall record during his time with the USF program.

Pipkins finished third in the balloting for the Upshaw Award (DII Offensive Lineman of the Year), and was earlier named to the D2Football.com (first team), and Associated Press (first team) and the D2CCA (second team) All-American teams. Selected one of four team captains for USF, Pipkins was named to the D2Football.com and The Podyum preseason All-American teams.

This season, Pipkins was named first team all-league for the first time on one of the league's top offensive line units. USF, which ranked fifth in the league in scoring at 33.8 points per game, led the NSIC and ranked fifth in NCAA DII in rushing at 274.2 yards per game. The Cougars, which ranked seventh nationally in yards per play (6.98), led the NSIC in total offense and ranked 14th in NCAA DII with 466.5 yards per game. Pipkins also blocked for Harlon Hill Award finalist Gabriel Watson, who led the nation in rushing yards per game (177.9 yards per game) and rushing touchdowns (26).

In 2018, Pipkins graded at 91.7 percent (651 positive reps in 710 plays) with 90.5 knockdowns. Pipkins, who had 234.5 knockdowns in 43 career starts, allowed just one sack this year and two in his career. A two-time Academic All-NSIC performer, he had a 90 percent grade in 10-of-11 games with a season-high of 96 percent vs Minot State and graded 94.5 percent against Wayne State, 92.4 percent vs No. 1 Minnesota State and 92.1 percent from Winona State, both road games.