Men's Hoops Honors Players At Banquet On Tuesday Evening
April 11, 2001
Alton Mason, the only senior on the Sun Devil squad, was named Arizona State's Most Valuable Offensive Player and received the team's assist award at the team's awards banquet held Tuesday night at Old Main on the ASU campus.
Mason averaged a team-leading 13.4 points per game and also handed out a team-leading 109 assists (3.8). He was the only Sun Devil to start in all 29 games and was a three-year starter (1998-2001).
Chad Prewitt earned the 'Ned Wulk Award' for his overall contributions to the program and also the Defensive MVP award. A junior from Greenway High School in Phoenix, Prewitt averaged 10.1 points and 4.9 rebounds in 27 games. He averaged 24.1 minutes per game.
Phoenix North product Tommy Smith earned the Most Improved Player award. The sophomore matched a Pac-10 record for field goal percentage by making all 11 shots against Washington on Feb. 10, and played well from mid-January through the season. Smith averaged 12.5 points in the final 15 games and had a career-high 24 points vs. the Huskies and had 21 points and 12 boards at NCAA-bound California on March 8. His 11-of-11 effort put him in the Pac-10 record book with Steve Johnson of OSU (13-of-13 vs. Hawaii-Hilo on Dec. 5, 1979), Marques Johnson of UCLA (11-of-11 vs. Cal on Feb. 27, 1976) and Bryan Bracey of Oregon (10-of-10 vs. UW on Jan. 20, 2000). Smith scored in double-digits in 12 of the final 15 games after posting double digits in just five games last season (just two Pac-10 games). He had 15 points at Oregon on Feb. 4, then had his first double-double with 11 points and 12 boards vs. Washington State on Feb. 8 before his 24-point, seven-rebound and five-assist effort against UW. In his final 10 games, Smith was 52-of-78 (.670) from the field and averaged 12.9 points. Smith averaged 9.3 points and 19.2 minutes on the year after averaging 4.9 points and 13.4 minutes per game last year.
The ASU program also gave the fifth 'Tony Cerkvenik Rebounder of the Year Award' to junior Awvee Storey, who averaged 9.1 rebounds per game, which led the Pac-10, including 9.7 per game in league play. Cerkvenik, a Sun Devil cager from 1960-63 and one of 12 Sun Devil basketball players in the ASU Hall of Fame, posted 1,022 career rebounds and 12.2 rebounds per game career average, both Sun Devil records. His 415 rebounds in 1961 also stands as an ASU single-season mark. Storey's 9.1 rebounds per game is the best by a Sun Devil since Alton Lister averaged 9.7 boards in 1980-81 and he is just the second Sun Devil to lead the Pac-10 in rebounding, joining Lester Neal, who led the league with 9.0 boards per game in 1992-93.The team Academic Award was given to Shawn Redhage, a sophomore construction science major who has earned a 3.28 grade point average. Redhage also won the award in 1999-2000.
ASU is scheduled to return 10 lettermen and four starters from this past season next year and will add redshirts Kenny Crandall and Justin Allen. The squad also has an Australian trip planned for May 15-26 where it will play 4-6 games against professional teams.