Sterns named WKU’s first AP Midseason All-American in FBS era


Brittany Fisher

WKU wide receiver Jerreth Sterns (8) celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the Hilltoppers’ season-opening 59-21 win over UT Martin on Sept. 2, 2021.

Wyatt Sparkman, Football reporter

WKU junior wide receiver Jerreth Sterns became the first AP Midseason All-American in WKU Football’s FBS era on Tuesday afternoon.

Sterns was named to a star-studded list that includes big NCAA names like Alabama quarterback Bryce Young and Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker III. Sterns is joined by one other wide receiver selection in USC’s Drake London.

Sterns lands on the AP’s list following a blistering first half to the 2021 season. The Waxahachie, Texas native leads all FBS receivers in total yards with 966 on 70 receptions. He has 100-plus more yards than the next receiver on that list, Calvin Austin III of Memphis, who has 857. Sterns is also tied for third in receiving touchdowns with eight. 

He became the first player since Michael Crabtree, a former top-10 NFL draft pick, in 2007 to catch at least 64 passes and tally 950 yards receiving in his team’s first six games. 

The Hilltoppers were expecting big things from Sterns after he transferred to the Hill from Houston Baptist University, and WKU has gotten what they asked for. Sterns was named Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week for the week of Oct. 18 following his stellar performance against the Old Dominion Monarchs.

The receiver hauled in 13 receptions for 221 yards on a jaw-dropping 17 yards per catch average along with his eighth touchdown to help snap WKU’s four-game skid with a 43-20 drubbing of ODU.

Sterns became the fifth player since 2000 to have 46 or more receptions and have 600-plus yards receiving in a three-game span. He put up those numbers against No. 9 Michigan State, No. 24 UTSA, and Old Dominion, who was previously the second best defense in C-USA. 

He was also added to the 2021 Biletnikoff Award Watch List, an award given to the nation’s best receiver, on Oct. 6th. Sterns will look to add to his heap of accolades when he and the rest of the Hilltoppers take the field in Miami, Florida to face the FIU Golden Panthers on Saturday, Oct. 23.

Football reporter Wyatt Sparkman can be reached at steve.sp[email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @wyattsparkman3 Sports Editor Jake Moore contributed to this article.