BOSTON - Senior forward Chima Moneke is one of 40 players named to the Lute Olson Award Preseason Watch List, as announced by CollegeInsider.com on Monday. This award, bestowed on a yearly basis, is presented to the nation’s top Division I player.
Moneke, a senior communication major, enjoyed an outstanding season for the Aggies last year. The Big West Conference’s rebound champion — he ended the season with a 9.5 per game figure — averaged 14.6 points, shot .527 overall and led the league in nine different categories: field goals made (192), rebounds per game, defensive rebounds (249), defensive rebounds per game (6.9), total rebounds (341), blocks (51), blocks per game (1.4), double-doubles (14) and double-figure rebound games (17).
With Moneke in the starting lineup, UC Davis advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history after winning its first-ever Big West Conference Tournament championship.
The only returning player from the 2016-17 All-Big West first team also earned NABC All-District, Big West Tournament Most Valuable Player, Big West All-Tournament Team, Big West Newcomer of the Year and the Riley Wallace Award, which is given to the nation’s top Division I transfer, following the Aggies’ historic 2016-17 season.
The Canberra, Australia native’s selection to this watch list is the latest addition to a list of preseason honors that includes a spot on the league’s Preseason All-Conference Team, Preseason Big West Conference Player of the Year (SB Nation), Preseason All-Mid-Major third team and Preseason All-Big West first team accolades (College Sports Madness).
The Lute Olson Award is named after the legendary head coach who won 780 games in 34 seasons — 24 spent at Arizona. Throughout his tenure in Tempe, Olson led the Wildcats to 11 Pac-10 Conference titles, 23 straight NCAA appearances, four Final Four appearances and a National Championship in 1997.
The Lute Olson National Player of the Year selection will take place on March 31, 2018, at the CollegeInsider.com Awards event In San Antonio, Texas — site of this season’s NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship.
UC Davis' 2017-18 campaign will begin on Nov. 13 at Northern Colorado -- the first of a season-opening five-game road swing that also includes another rivalry game vs, Sacramento State at the Golden 1 Center, the state-of-the-art downtown home of the Sacramento Kings. A home-and-home series against Northern Colorado will conclude on Nov. 29 when the Aggies compete inside the Pavilion for the first time this year.
2017-18 LUTE OLSON PRESEASON WATCH LIST
Chima Moneke - 6-6, Sr., UC Davis
Jalen Adams - 6-3, Jr., Connecticut
Deng Adel - 6-7, Jr., Louisville
Peyton Aldridge - 6-8, Sr., Davidson
Grayson Allen - 6-5, Sr., Duke
Joel Berry II - 6-0, Sr., North Carolina
Trevon Bluiett - 6-6, Sr., Xavier
Miles Bridges - 6-7, So., Michigan State
Bruce Brown Jr. - 6-5, So., Miami
Jalen Brunson - 6-3, Jr., Villanova
Jevon Carter - 6-2, Sr., West Virginia
Joe Chealey - 6-4, Sr., Charleston
Gary Clark - 6-8, Sr., Cincinnati
Chris Clemons - 5-9, Jr., Campbell
Bonzie Colson - 6-6, Sr., Notre Dame
Mike Daum - 6-9, Jr., South Dakota State
Tyler Davis - 6-10, Jr., Texas A&M
Angel Delgado - 6-10, Sr., Seton Hall
Shannon Evans II - 6-2, Sr., Arizona State
Marcus Foster - 6-0, Sr., Creighton
Nana Foulland - 6-9, Sr., Bucknell
Devonte Graham - 6-2, Sr., Kansas
Tyler Hall - 6-4, Jr., Montana State
Ethan Happ - 6-10, Jr., Wisconsin
Kevin Hervey - 6-9, Sr., UT Arlington
Aaron Holiday - 6-1, Jr., UCLA
Ben Lammers - 6-10, Sr., Georgia Tech
Jock Landale - 6-11, Jr., Saint Mary's
Kelan Martin - 6-7, Sr., Butler
Yante Maten - 6-8, Sr., Georgia
E.C. Matthews - 6-5, Sr., Rhode Island
Jordan McLaughlin - 6-1, Sr., USC
Chimezie Metu - 6-11, Jr., USC
Shake Milton - 6-6, Jr., SMU
Landry Shamet - 6-4, So., Wichita State
D'Marcus Simmonds - 6-3, So., Georgia State
MaCio Teague - 6-3, So., UNC Asheville
Reid Travis - 6-8, Jr., Stanford
Allonzo Trier - 6-5, Jr., Arizona
Robert Williams - 6-10, So., Texas A&M
TOGETHER, WE CAN ACCOMPLISH ANYTHING
Directly impact the lives of potential, and current UC Davis basketball student-athletes, by joining the Aggie Round Table.
With support from this select group of insiders, the men’s basketball program can expand its recruiting efforts to find prospects who will thrive at the sixth-ranked public school in the nation, compete at a championship level and represent the University in a first-class manner as one of its ambassadors.
Contact Liz Martin (Director of Development) at (530) 574-8623 or email@example.com to find out how you can join this exclusive club!
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ABOUT UC DAVIS
Providing a small-town community feel while providing a world-class academic experience, UC Davis is home to more than 37,000 students and centrally located between San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, and the Napa Valley.
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