Jan. 5, 2010
PULLMAN, Wash. - Washington State University football Head Coach Paul Wulff announced individual awards from the 2009 Cougar Football season at the team's recent season-ending senior banquet.
Redshirt senior center Kenny Alfred took home a slew of accolades, including being named the team's Offensive Most Valuable Player. Alfred started every game for the Cougars in 2009, garnering second-team All-Pacific-10 Conference honors.
Alfred, from Gig Harbor, Wash., was also honored with the Laurie Niemi Award, given annually to the senior who best depicts the courage and attitude of former Cougar assistant coach Laurie Niemi. Alfred started 44 games during his Cougar career, including each of the last 29. He missed just one game during his four years anchoring the Cougars' offensive line.
Alfred also received the Mike Utley Award, given to the team's offensive lineman of the year, and the Tim Petek Strongest Man Award.
Redshirt senior safety Xavier Hicks Jr. was named WSU's Defensive Most Valuable Player. Hicks, from Fullerton, Calif., was WSU's second-leading tackler in 2009, racking up 81 stops (50 solo) en route to All-Pac-10 honorable mention honors. Hicks also led WSU or tied for the team high in interceptions (three), pass break-ups (four) and forced fumbles (two).
Redshirt senior running back Dwight Tardy (Walnut, Calif.) was given the Frank Butler Award, which goes to a senior member of the team who exemplifies the Cougar spirit made famous by Spokane booster Frank Butler. Tardy, who also garnered All-Pac-10 honorable mention honors after the 2009 season, led WSU in rushing for the fourth-straight year, the first known running back in school history to accomplish the feat.
Mike Utley Award (Offensive Lineman of the Year) Kenny Alfred
Tim Petek Award (Strongest Man Award) Kenny Alfred
Offensive Most Valuable Player Kenny Alfred
Defensive Most Valuable Player Xavier Hicks Jr.