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Steve Marcus

UNLV Rebels place kicker Jose Pizano (18) watches as the ball goes through the uprights for a field goal during the second half of the Rebels season opener against the Bryant University Bulldogs at Allegiant Stadium Saturday, Sept. 2, 2023.

Kicker Jose Pizano has become the first UNLV player in two decades to receive first team All-America honors, the university announced.

Pizano was selected by the Football Writers Association of America to become only the sixth UNLV player to make first team on any All-America list, school officials said.

Pizano, a transfer from Missouri State in his final season of eligibility, made 25 of 27 field goal attempts and all 52 of his extra points this season.

The Mountain West Special Teams Player of the Year was a finalist for the Lou Groza Award for the nation’s best kicker.

He had game-winning field goals against Vanderbilt and Colorado State to help the Rebels enjoy a breakthrough season with nine wins.

Pizano set program records for field goals in a game (six) and a season (25), kicking points in a game (19) and a season (127). He also made a program-best 19 consecutive field goals.

Safety Jamaal Brimmer in 2003 was the last UNLV first-team All-American. Punter Joe Kristosik was picked in 1988, and Randall Cunningham — the program’s best all-time player — was picked in 1983 as a punter.

Cunningham was also a quarterback and went on to have a lengthy NFL career under center.

UNLV still has a game left to play. The Rebels face Kansas Dec. 26 in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl in Phoenix, marking the program’s first bowl appearance since 2013.

Article written by #LasVegasSun

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