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Bears rookie Gipson comes from athletic family

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Bears fifth-round draft pick Trevis Gipson, an outside linebacker from Tulsa, isn't the only accomplished athlete in his family.

His grandfather, Tom Gipson, was a defensive tackle who played four games with the Raiders in 1971 after being chosen in the 14th round of the NFL Draft.

Trevis Gipson's father, Thomas, played basketball at Texas and North Texas, and Trevis' older brother, also named Thomas, has traveled the world playing professional basketball after starring at Kansas State.

Constantly competing with his older brother helped fuel Trevis, who grew up in the Dallas area playing football, basketball, baseball and soccer.

"We were really competitive, me and my brother," Trevis said. "We would play one-on-one days in a row. Or we would compete in little stuff, like who could do the most pushups or who could run the fastest."

Gipson's brother played basketball at Kansas State from 2011-15, scoring more than 1,000 points. As a senior, Thomas was named the team's co-MVP and top defender after averaging 11.3 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.

Although he had never played organized football, Thomas was contacted by the Packers, who felt the 6-7, 265-pounder possessed the athleticism and size to possibly become an NFL tight end. Thomas worked out for Green Bay scouts at Kansas State, but he was not offered a contract.

A few months later, Thomas began a professional basketball career in Finland and has also played in leagues in Mexico, France, Ukraine, Panama and Turkey.

Trevis, meanwhile, chose to play football over basketball in college.

"I liked it more and I knew I could be more successful in it," Trevis said. "I've been playing football since I've been five years old."

Gipson was a two-year starter at Tulsa, where he earned first-team All-American Athletic Conference honors last year as a senior after setting career highs with 49 tackles, eight sacks and 15 tackles-for-loss. As a junior in 2018, he registered 46 tackles, four sacks, nine tackles-for-loss and five forced fumbles.

Gipson made major strides from his junior to senior seasons. He credits his improvement to attending a pass rush summit hosted by Broncos star outside linebacker Von Miller last summer in Las Vegas. Gipson was among approximately 40 college and NFL pass rushers in attendance.

After trading a 2021 fourth-round pick to the Vikings for a fifth-round choice to select Gipson, Bears general manager Ryan Pace told reporters that the 6-4, 253-pounder possesses "tremendous upside as a pass rusher." Pace also revealed that during an hour-long video pre-draft interview, Gipson came across as natural and authentic, saying: "You could feel the hunger in his voice, the drive, and the desire to be great, the passion."

With Halas Hall closed due to the coronavirus, Gipson has been unable to display those characteristics on the practice field. He and his teammates instead have been participating in the Bears' offseason program, which is being conducted solely on a virtual basis.

"It's just something that comes with the situation," Gipson said. "The only way that we can learn on defense is through our iPads or virtually speaking with our coaches. As much as I would love to be at the facility there at Halas Hall, it is what it is."

Gipson can't wait for the COVID-19 restrictions to be lifted so he can head to Halas Hall to continue preparing for his rookie season.

"I'm really eager," Gipson said. "I've been waiting on this moment all my life, so I'm anxious for that time to come."

With the 155th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Bears select OLB Trevis Gipson

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