Walkup Repeats as Southland Conference POY, Underwood Named COY as SLC Unveils All-League Awards

Walkup Repeats as Southland Conference POY, Underwood Named COY as SLC Unveils All-League Awards

From SFA Athletics

FRISCO, TX (Press Release)- Stephen F. Austin men's basketball senior Thomas Walkup repeated as the Southland Conference Player of the Year and the Lumberjacks' head coach Brad Underwood made league history by laying claim to his third-straight SLC Coach of the Year award as the 13-team league announced its list of yearly honors on Monday morning.

Walkup also carved out spots for himself on the All-SLC First Team and the league's All-Defensive Team and is one of four Lumberjacks who collected SLC honors of some variety. Demetrious Floyd earned a spot on the All-SLC Second Team, Clide Geffrard was named to the All-SLC Third Team and senior Trey Pinkney was one of five individuals who comprised the league's All-Defensive Team. Pinkney was also named an All-SLC Honorable Mention.

Real estate is becoming more and more of a scarcity in Walkup's personal awards shelf following his second-straight Southland Conference Player of the Year award. The first man to capture back-to-back conference player of the year honors in over 20 years, Walkup runs SFA's streak of consecutive SLC Player of the Year awards to four and led the `Jacks to their fourth-straight regular season SLC crown.

SFA's leader in scoring (17.3 ppg), rebounding (6.9/game) and assists (4.6/game) the Pasadena, Texas, product put the finishing touches on his player of the year campaign by notching SFA's first triple double in 43 seasons with a 12-point, 15-rebound, 10-assist performance in an 84-58 victory at Incarnate Word on Feb. 29. 

A two-time SLC Player of the Week award recipient, Walkup helped the 'Jacks finish off their second 18-0 league slate in three seasons by flirting with another triple double (10 points, seven rebounds, eight assists) in a 95-55 win at Northwestern State before resetting his career-scoring high by way of a 38-point performance in an 85-64 victory at Sam Houston State on Saturday night. 

Walkup became SFA's all-time Division I-era leader in field goals made, rebounds and free throws made this season and along with Pinkney became the program's all-time winningest player with 113 triumphs to his credit. A candidate for both the Senior CLASS Award and the Allstate NABC Good Works Team this season, Walkup was tabbed as Sport's Illustrated's Mid-Major Player of the Week once time this season and is one of 11 semifinalists for the 2016 Eddie Sutton Tustenugee Award. 

One of the nation's most well-rounded and efficient players, Walkup ranks among the top five performers in no fewer than seven statistical categories and ranks 24th nationally in steals per game (2.1) and 26th nationally in field goal percentage (.595).

The architect of the Lumberjacks' run of unprecedented success on the court, Underwood made more Southland Conference history by becoming the first individual in the history of the league to claim three-straight SLC Coach of the Year awards. At the conclusion of his third regular season in charge of the Lumberjacks, Underwood has amassed a record of 86-13 and has produced a 25-5 record in 2015-16.

Included in the aforementioned 25-5 mark is a perfect 18-0 record in Southland Conference play and he joins former coaching giants Bob Knight (Indiana), John Chaney (Temple) and Jerry Tarkanian (UNLV) as one of the only individuals to ever rattle off two or more undefeated conference records in a league schedule of 18 or more games in NCAA Division I men's basketball history.

Through the course of his three seasons as the Lumberjacks' head man, Underwood has produced a 57-1 record in Southland Conference games and in total his winning percentage of .869 is the fourth-highest ever for a head coach through his first three seasons at the helm of a Division I program.

In the midst of his most productive season as a Lumberjacks, Floyd has scorched many a 2015-16 foe with his lethal downtown touch. A roughly 10-minute spike in his minutes per game from last season to this one has resulted in a significant hike in his production as he averages 13.5 points per game - up 6.7 from 2014-15.

Floyd has connected on at least one three-pointer in 29 of the `Jacks 30 tilts this season and his 87 downtown makes are the 36th-most among NCAA Division I men's basketball players this season. Additionally, his 2.9 triples per game and 42.4-percent success rate from beyond the arc rank second and fifth in the 13-team SLC respectively and 33rd and 29th nationally. On January 25, he collected the first SLC Player of the Week citation of his career following a career-high 32-point outburst in a blowout victory at New Orleans. Through the week-long stretch, he averaged 24.5 points on 66.7-percent (20-of-30) shooting, which included a 52.7 shooting clip (9-of-17) from long range.

Arguably the best sixth man in the 13-team league, Geffrard has captivated many through the course of a highly successful senior campaign. Thriving when coming off of the bench, which he has done for all but two of the `Jacks 30 regular-season tilts, the Pompano Beach, Fla., owns the `Jacks third-best scoring average with 13.2 markers per game. Among the top 20 scorers in the league, he ranks 14th with that figure and is one of just two men among that particular group who come off the bench. Geffrard has notched those points on the strength of a field goal percentage of 51.3 - second on the team - and a team-leading free-throw mark of 79.4.

Only one individual among SFA's ranks - Thomas Walkup, to be precise - has amassed more outings of 20 or more points this season than Geffrard who has notched at least 20 on seven occasions in 2015-16. Additionally, Geffrard is the second-best rebounder on the team, yanking down an average of 5.7 per game. He finished as the team's leading rebound-getter on 12 occasions this season and from last season to this one, he raised his scoring average by 5.3 points and upped his rebounding numbers by 2.8 per game.

Wreaking all kinds of havoc on the defensive side of the ball by helming the league's best and the nation's 13th best scoring defense, Pinkney finds himself on the receiving end of All-Defensive Team honors for the first time in his career. With the Katy, Texas, product stationed at point guard, he led a Lumberjacks' defense that is tops in the nation in both turnover margin (+5.8) and turnovers forced per game (18.6). One of the league's finest on-ball defenders, the senior is also the owner of the nation's sixth-best assist to turnover ratio - a Southland-Conference leading figure of 3.79.

Along with his four-year teammate Walkup, Pinkney is the winningest player in SFA men's basketball history with 113 triumphs and also sits in first place in games played with 130.