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10 Utes earn All-Pac-12 honors, led by Sione Vaki, Jonah Elliss and Jack Bouwmeester

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Utah Utes safety Sione Vaki (wearing black) runs against the Colorado Buffaloes

Utah Utes safety Sione Vaki (28) runs against the Colorado Buffaloes in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Nov. 25, 2023.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

Ten Utah football players were honored with All-Pac-12 accolades, headlined by two-way player Sione Vaki, who earned two spots on the All-Pac-12 first team, at safety and as an all-purpose player.

Vaki played both ways for Utah this season, as a safety, a running back and a wide receiver. He finished the regular season with 51 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss, two sacks, an interception and three pass deflections on defense, while adding 317 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns and 11 receptions for 203 yards and three scores.

Defensive end Jonah Elliss ranks No. 2 in the nation in sacks per game, totaling 12 sacks over 10 games before missing Utah’s final two contests with a season-ending injury. Elliss also contributed 37 tackles, 16 tackles for loss, a forced fumble and three pass deflections.

Punter Jack Bouwmeester rounded out Utah’s first team selections. He booted the ball away 48 times this season for an average of 46.04 yards, which ranks No. 13 in the country. The Australian native had 20 punts inside the 20-yard line and 17 punts of 50 or more yards.

Right tackle Sataoa Laumea, who recently accepted a Senior Bowl invite, earned his fourth all-conference selection. Laumea was named to the All-Pac-12 second team, while left guard Keaton Bills and right guard Michael Mokofisi were named as honorable mentions.

Defensive tackle Junior Tafuna, linebacker Karene Reid and safety Cole Bishop were selected to the All-Pac-12 second team, while cornerback Zemaiah Vaughn was named an honorable mention.