SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – After helping the Cal Poly football program finish the regular season leading the nation in rushing offense for a third consecutive season, Mustang senior center Stephen Sippel was named November's Papa John's/Cal Poly Athlete of the Month.
Sippel started his final 35 games at center for Cal Poly's offensive line, last missing a game in 2012 at Wyoming. With Sippel, Cal Poly has routinely been atop the nation in multiple offensive categories.
Sippel helped the Mustang offensive line rush to the tune of 4,260 yards in just 11 games. That mark was best in the nation and also eclipsed the previous school and Big Sky records of 4,221 yards rushed in 12 games last season. Sippel started every game at center during those two record-breaking seasons.
The offensive line found success both run-blocking and pass-blocking this season as Sippel led a unit that helped the Mustangs finish No. 10 in sacks allowed and No. 8 in total offense. In the month of November, the Mustangs finished 2-1 thanks in large part to scoring a combined 136 points across three games and surrendering only three sacks.
At home on Nov. 7, the Mustang offense amassed 461 total yards of offense in a 36-14 victory over Big Sky Conference opponent Sacramento State. The offensive line surrendered just one sack, committed zero penalties, and allowed the Mustangs to average an impressive six yards per rush.
On Nov. 14 at UC Davis, the Mustangs secured a 55-38 victory that brought the Golden Horseshoe Trophy back to Alex G. Spanos Stadium. In arguably their best game of the season, the Mustang offensive line propelled the rushing attack to an astounding 491 yards while surrendering no sacks and committing zero penalties.
During the month of November, the Cal Poly rushing attack averaged over five yards per carry – its highest average for any month all season.