|From left, head coach Jim Crews, senior forward Jake Barnett, senior forward Dwayne Evans and senior guard Jordair Jett. Barnett and Evans received All-Academic and All Conference honors respectively.|
BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Saint Louis senior guard Jordair Jett has been named the Atlantic 10 Conference men's basketball Player of the Year, according to a vote of the league's head coaches in advance of this week's A-10 Championship at Barclays Center.
Jett is joined on the A-10 first team by senior forward Dwayne Evans, who was tabbed first-team All-Conference for a second consecutive year. Also, Saint Louis head coach Jim Crews was named A-10 Coach of the Year for a second consecutive season.
Additionally, Evans was named to the All-Academic team for the second time in his career, while senior forward Jake Barnett also landed on the All-Academic squad.
Jett, who also was named to the A-10 All-Defensive team, led the Billikens in scoring in A-10 play with 17 ppg. For the season, he averaged 13.8 ppg and led the team with 4.7 assists per game. Jett is the first Billiken to be named a conference Player of the Year since 1981, when David Burns earned the Metro Conference's top honor.
Jett, a four-time A-10 Player of the Week, was especially valuable in several close Billiken wins. He scored a career-high 31 points against Rhode Island in the A-10 opener, which included a pair of free throws with seven seconds left to lift SLU to the win. Against La Salle, Jett scored 19 second-half points including the game-winning layup to hand the Billikens the win. His free throw with less than a second remaining at George Mason sent the game into overtime, and SLU won in the extra session. Finally, Jett converted a driving layup with three seconds left that gave the Billikens a win at UMass, clinching the A-10 regular-season title outright.
Evans is the first Billiken to collect back-to-back first-team All-Conference honors since Erwin Claggett in the Great Midwest Conference. Evans led the team in scoring with 14 ppg and pulled down a team-leading 6.4 rpg. Among active NCAA Division I players, he is 11th in the nation with 918 career rebounds and tied for 18th with 25 career double-doubles.
Evans, a business administration major, is joined on the All-Academic team by Barnett, who already has graduated with a degree in business administration and is working toward an MBA. This is the fourth time in the Billikens' nine years of A-10 membership they have placed two student-athletes on the five-member All-Academic team. During that span, it has happened only one other time - Richmond in 2006-07.
Crews is the second coach in Billiken history to earn two conference Coach of the Year awards at SLU, and the first to do it in consecutive seasons. He is a finalist for the Henry Iba National Coach of the Year Award. In addition to capturing A-10 Coach of the Year honors last season, Crews was named National Coach of the Year by the Sporting News and the NABC.
The Billikens, who are A-10 regular-season champions for a second straight year, begin play in the A-10 Championship Friday at 11 a.m. (CT) as the No. 1 seed. They will take on the winner of Thursday's game between No. 8 La Salle and No. 9 St. Bonaventure. Friday's game will be televised on NBCSN.