By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Four Willamette University men's basketball players have been chosen as members of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Honors Court for the 2018-19 season as a result of their academic success. Bearcats who qualified for the Honors Court are Trent Callan (Sr., G, Portland, OR/Lincoln HS), Jordan Jenkins (Sr., F, Placentia, CA/Valencia HS), Caleb Roberts (Sr., W, Salem, OR/North HS), and Jeff Sutherland (Sr., F, Seattle, WA/Seattle Christian HS). Callan, Jenkins and Roberts also were named to the Honors Court in 2017-18.
Willamette's eight selections, plus four players from Linfield College, were the only Northwest Conference athletes who were chosen for the Honors Court this year.
In order to qualify for the NABC Honors Court student-athletes had to have a a 3.2 cumulative grade point average or higher at the end of the 2018-19 academic year. Each selection also had to be a varsity player who recently finished his junior or senior season. Every Honors Court athlete was at his current college or university for at least one full year. All four of Willamette's selections graduated this spring. The 2018-19 Honors Court includes a total of 824 student-athletes from NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II and NCAA Division III, as well as NAIA Division I and NAIA Division II.
"This group has set the tone for future classes on how to live our program foundation of 'Men, Family, Legacy,'" Willamette Head Men's Basketball Coach Kip Ioane said. "From historic wins on the court to the four of them earning Honors Court recognition, these guys are the epitome of what we want our players to be."
NABC Honors Court for 2018-19
Trent Callan (Sr., Guard), who graduated with a Computer Science major, contributed 10.9 points and 4.8 rebounds per game this season. He provided the Bearcats with quality shooting, as he sank 53.8% of his field goals, including 51.3% from 3-point range (20 of 39). He scored in double figures 15 times. He tied Jenkins for the team lead with 105 assists, and ranked first on the team with 29 steals. He averaged 4.4 assists and 1.2 steals per game.
During his Willamette career, Callan played in 90 games, including 64 starts. He scored 630 career points and recorded 284 career rebounds. He also supplied WU with 202 assists and 74 steals. This season, Callan scored a career-high 29 points against University of Northwestern-St. Paul (Minn.) on Dec. 28.
"Point guards have to be leaders," Ioane said. "T.C. earning this award again (after receiving it in 2017-18) is another example of the leader he has always been for us."
Jordan Jenkins (Sr., Forward), who received a bachelor's degree this spring with a major in Economics, will be attending Willamette's Atkinson Graduate School of Management for his final year in the 3/2 MBA program. This season, he was named First Team All-Northwest Conference, was chosen Third Team All-West Region, and was a finalist for the Jostens Trophy which goes to the most outstanding basketball student-athlete in NCAA Division III. He was selected Second Team All-NWC in 2017-18. Ioane and Jenkins were presenters at the 2019 NCAA Inclusion Forum.
As a senior, Jenkins averaged 20.0 points and 10.3 rebounds per game, with his scoring average ranking him eighth all-time at Willamette. In conference play, he led the NWC with 22.2 points and 11.8 rebounds per game. He shot 58.4% on field goals (180 of 308) to tie for eighth on the Bearcats' all-time list, and converted 127 of 168 free throws (75.6%). He earned 20 or more points 16 times, and registered 16 double-doubles to rank ninth in NCAA Division III during the regular season.
Jenkins provided the Bearcats with 1,109 career points and 588 career rebounds in 80 games (71 starts). He finished his career with 219 assists, 62 blocks and 57 steals. This year, he scored a career-high 32 points against University of Puget Sound on Feb. 9, after scoring 31 points and earning a career-high 19 rebounds versus Pacific University on Feb. 5.
"To earn this award in the fourth year of the 3/2 program, while also putting up the numbers he did on the floor, is exactly why Jordan was a Josten's Trophy National Finalist," Ioane said.
Caleb Roberts (Sr., Wing) earned his bachelor's degree in Civic Communications and Media. During the 2018-19 season, he saw action in 25 games with 23 starts. He averaged 5.4 points per game and connected on 41 three-point shots. He scored 15 points against Concordia University (Texas) on Nov. 16 and matched that total versus University of California, Santa Cruz on Dec. 20.
In four seasons at Willamette, Roberts competed in 68 games and sank 54 three-point shots, while making 16 of 20 fee throw attempts (80.0%). He hit five 3-pointers in each of his high-scoring games against Concordia and UC Santa Cruz. One of his 3-pointers against UCSC gave the Bearcats the lead with 35 seconds left in a 73-71 victory.
"I'm excited to see Caleb earn this award," Ioane commented. "He has always gone about his work on and off the floor without much fanfare so this recognition is much deserved."
Jeff Sutherland (Sr., Forward) recently graduated with a bachelor's degree in Computer Science and a minor in Religious Studies. As a senior, he played in 14 games for the Bearcats and made one start. He scored 17 points, grabbed 11 rebounds, and was 8 of 14 on field goals (57.1%).
Sutherland played in 17 career games for the Bearcats. He worked hard on the court and was always strong in the classroom.