James named to academic team

IRVING, Texas -- Five University of Texas Men's Basketball players have earned a spot on the 2010 Academic All-Big 12 Men's Basketball Team, the league office announced Wednesday. Senior Damion James and juniors Dogus Balbay and Gary Johnson were each named to the First Team, while senior Justin Mason and sophomore Alexis Wangmene were selected to the Second Team.

UT's five selections marked the most of any school in the conference. This marks the second straight year that the Longhorns had the most Academic All-Big 12 honors in the sport of men's basketball. Texas had six players earn the accolades last season.

This marks James' third career selection to the Academic All-Big 12 team, as he was a second-team pick in 2007-08 and a first-team choice in 2008-09. Mason also earned his third career honor, as he was a second-team choice in both his sophomore and junior year. Balbay and Johnson each earned their second career selections to the academic all-league first team.

Nominated by each institution's director of student-athlete support services and the media relations offices, the academic all-league men's basketball team consisted of 12 first-team members and nine second-team members. First team members honor those who have maintained a 3.20 or better GPA, and the second team honorees are those who have a 3.00 to 3.19 GPA.

To qualify for the team, student-athletes must maintain a 3.00 GPA or higher either cumulative or the two previous semesters and must have participated in 60 percent of his team's scheduled contests. Freshmen and transfers are not eligible in their first year of academic residence. Senior student-athletes who have participated for a minimum of two years and meet all the criteria except percent of participation are also eligible. STORY AD BEGINS HERE