USC Holds Annual Men's Basketball Awards Banquet|
April 12, 2016
LOS ANGELES – Nine different Trojan players were honored with awards at the 2015-16 USC Men’s Basketball Awards Banquet held in the Founders Room at Galen Center on campus tonight (April 12) .
Junior guard Julian Jacobs was named the winner of the Harold Jones Award as the most improved player. Jacobs averaged 11.6 points, 4.9 rebounds and a Pac-12-leading 5.5 assists per game. He scored in double figures in 22 of his 31 games played and was named to the All-Pac-12 first team. USC’s top rebounder again was junior Nikola Jovanovic who earned the Bob Boyd Award as the team’s leading rebounder. Jovanovic grabbed 237 rebounds for an average of 7.0 per game, while finishing second on the team with a 12.1 points per game average. Jovanovic started all 34 games and shot 52.4 percent from the floor. He recorded a team-high seven double-doubles and passed the 1,000 points scored mark on Feb. 28 and finished the season with 1,063 career points scored, 34th all-time by a Trojan.
Freshman Bennie Boatwright and Chimezie Metu were named the Ryan Francis Scholarship recipients as being the best examples of being a Trojan. Boatwright averaged 11.5 points and 5.2 rebounds per game, while tying for the team lead with 60 three-point baskets made. His 60 three-point baskets tied Harold Miner for third on USC’s all-time freshman list and his 171 rebounds rank seventh all-time by a Trojan freshman. Metu averaged 6.4 points and 3.6 rebounds per game, while leading the team with 54 blocked shots and 50 dunks. Metu’s 54 blocked shots are the second-most ever by a Trojan freshman, trailing only the 69 by Taj Gibson in 2007.
Redshirt junior guard Katin Reinhardt won the Bill Sharman Award for having the best free throw percentage for the second consecutive season. Reinhardt made 78.3 percent (36-for-46) of his free throw attempts this season. Reinhardt averaged 11.4 points per game and tied for the team lead with 60 three-point baskets made. In his two seasons as a Trojan, Reinhardt made 121 three-pointers which ranks tied for third on USC’s all-time list.
The Forrest F. Twogood Award for being USC’s best defensive player was given to sophomore guard Jordan McLaughlin. McLaughlin led the team and was fourth in the Pac-12 with 55 steals. McLaughlin was named Pac-12 honorable mention as he led USC with a 13.4 scoring average and was fifth in the conference with 160 assists. He set the USC single-game assist record when he recorded 16 vs. Lafayette on Dec. 23, breaking the previous record of 15 set by Brandon Granville in 1999.
Junior forward Samer Dhillon was named the Dr. James H. Zumberge Academic Award recipient as having the team’s top GPA (3.67) for the third consecutive season. Dhillon played in six games and made the only shot he attempted this season. He was one of five Division I players named to the NABC Good Works Team for commitment to enriching the lives of others and contributing to the greater good in their communities. Dhillon was honored at the Final Four in Houston, Texas.
Senior forward Strahinja Gavrilovic was named the John Rudometkin Award winner for giving 110-percent effort. Gavrilovic played in 18 games and made one start, averaging 1.2 points and grabbing four rebounds. He also was a perfect 6-for-6 from the free throw line.
Redshirt junior forward Darion Clark was given the Ernie Holbrook Award as the most inspirational player on the team. Clark played in 26 games and averaged 2.6 points and 4.6 rebounds. His prorated rebound average (40 minutes played per game) of 16.5 was nearly six more than the next closest Trojan. He suffered a dislocated shoulder on Feb. 3 and missed the next seven games and USC went 2-5 with him on the bench. He returned to action and totaled 10 rebounds in 20 minutes of play at the Pac-12 Tournament, but reinjured the shoulder in practice on Selection Sunday and did not compete in the NCAA Tournament game against Providence.
The following is a list of all of tonight’s award winners:
The Harold Jones Award Most Improved Julian Jacobs Bob Boyd Award Top Rebounder Nikola Jovanovic Ryan Francis Scholarship Award Example of Being a Trojan Bennie Boatwright & Chimezie Metu Bill Sharman Award Top FT Percentage Katin Reinhardt Forrest F. Twogood Award Best Defensive Player Jordan McLaughlin Dr. James Zumberge Award Top GPA Samer Dhillon John Rudometkin Award 110% Effort Strahinja Gavrilovic Ernie Holbrook Award Most Inspirational Darion Clark