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Nathan Roy of Mukwonago selected to receive Joe Thomas Award

11/15/2023, 11:00am CST
By Travis Wilson

Wisconsin Sports Network and are happy to announce Mukwonago's Nathan Roy as the 2023 recipient of the Joe Thomas Award as the most outstanding senior offensive lineman in Wisconsin, part of the WSN Senior Football Awards.

Nathan Roy of Mukwonago has continued to climb the ladder as one of the elite prospects in the state and locked down the number one position in our Class of 2024 Player Rankings.

He was a First Team All-State pick last year in a loaded offensive line group. He received a host of offers from around the country, but after cutting his list to UCLA, Michigan State, and Minnesota, he surprised many by giving a commitment to the border state Gophers.

"He is the complete package for an offensive lineman," said Mukwonago coach Mike Gnewuch. "He is aggressive, athletic, fast, agile, etc. He can run block (gap or zone), pass block, block in space; there isn't anything he can't do on the offensive line."

Unfortunately Roy suffered a season-ending knee injury late in the regular season. That didn't prevent him from earning WFCA Large School All-State recognition.

Finalists for the award were Roy, Donovan Harbour of Catholic Memorial, Derek Jensen of Arrowhead, Grey Rumohr of Kettle Moraine, and Mitch Verstegen of Kaukauna.

Past winners include Waunakee's Jake Irwin (2009), Wisconsin Rapids' Frank Vruwink (2010), Waukesha West's Connor Stefanski (2011), Wisconsin Rapids' Hayden Biegel (2012), Monona Grove's Jaden Gault (2013), Seymour's Jon Dietzen (2014), Arrowhead's Ben Bredeson (2015), Middleton's Kayden Lyles (2016), Waukesha West's Bryce Teixeira (2017), and Fond du Lac's Andrew Stone (2018), Stoughton's Jack Nelson (2019), Grafton's J.P. Benzschawel (2020), Whitefish Bay's Joe Brunner (2021), and Monroe's Isaac Bunker (2022).

The award is named after Joe Thomas, a graduate of Brookfield Central High School now playing in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns. Thomas was a three-sport athlete in high school, lettering all four years in football, basketball, and track and field while also being named to the Honor Roll all four years. He started 37 games at left tackle for the Badgers and won the Outland Trophy after his senior season. After an All-American career at UW, Thomas was selected to the NFL Pro Bowl each of his first ten years in the league and is a sure-fire Hall of Famer.

The voting panel for the WSN Senior Football Awards consisted of:  Travis Wilson, WSN General Manager and Head Football Writer;  Norbert Durst, WSN Content Manager; Dennis Semrau, ESPN Madison; Bob Brainerd, Thursday Night Throwdown broadcaster; Jimmie Kaska, Civic Media; Dan Barwick, WSN Contributor; Colton Wilson, WSN Content Producer; Fan Vote

About the Author

Travis Wilson serves as the General Manager, Football Editor, and contributing writer for other parts of the site. Wilson was selected as part of the Sports 40 Under 40 list by Coach & AD Magazine and the National High School Athletic Coaches Association for 2019. The Wisconsin Football Coaches Association (WFCA) named Travis the 2015 recipient of the Dave McClain Distinguished Service Award. He currently serves on the WFCA Executive Board and is a member of the Executive Board of the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association. A graduate of Richland Center High School and Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Travis was a three-sport athlete in high school (football, baseball, basketball), inducted to the Richland Center High School Hall of Fame in 2023, and currently resides in Reedsburg. You can follow him on Twitter at @travisWSN.

For the latest and most up to date football news and recruiting information, follow Travis on Twitter @travisWSN. Email story ideas, recruiting info, etc. to Travis at travis(at)

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