Gipson was selected All-WPIAL and All-America for his play at Aliquippa High School where he averaged 18 points, 15 rebounds, and five assists per game as a senior. He was selected as the most valuable player in the Quigley and Colt All-Star classics.

At WVU, Gipson was known as a rebounder and shot-blocker. He played in nine games in the 1977-1978 season and averaged 1.2 points and 2.2 rebounds as a freshman. Gipson was injured in the summer before1978-1979 season. In that season, Gipson played in 28 of 29 games and averaged 4.9 points and 5.4 rebounds a game, he also blocked 11 shots and had 10 steals. He hit for a career high 14 points twice in 1978-1979 season, in Eastern Eight contests against George Washington and St. Bonaventure. In the 1979-1980 season, Gipson averaged 4.9 points and 3.8 rebounds in 33 games. He was one of only four Mountaineers who saw action in every contest in 1979. He hit 53.7 percent of his field goal attempts (65-121), leading the team in that department. Gipson majored in physical education.