OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Utah Valley University senior Holton Hunsaker was named one of 30 candidates for the men’s basketball Senior CLASS Award for the 2013-14 season.
To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence — community, classroom, character and competition.
“This is a tremendous honor for Holton, the men’s basketball program and Utah Valley University," Director of Athletics Vince Otoupal said. "Holton embodies what we are doing here in Wolverine athletics. His work on and off the court exemplifies the Wolverine way.”
Hunsaker is coming off a season in which he was named the Great West Conference’s Male Scholar Athlete of the Year, to the I-AAA Athletic Director’s All-Academic Team, to the Capital One Academic All-District Team, to the Great West All-Academic Team and first-team All-Great West Conference.
He is the only male athlete from the state of Utah and the WAC to be named a candidate. The WAC is represented on the women's side with three candidates.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Of the 60 male and female candidates, 20 have grade point averages of 3.5 or higher. There are eight CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-Americans and seven returning All-Americans. Twenty-four of the 32 NCAA Division I basketball-playing conferences are represented as well.
The Senior CLASS Award winners will be announced during the 2014 NCAA Men’s Final Four and NCAA Women’s Final Four.
Each of the 30 candidate classes will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one male candidate and one female candidate who best exemplify excellence in the four C's of community, classroom, character and competition.
Hunsaker and Utah Valley, entering the WAC this year, open the season on Nov. 8 against IUPUI before consecutive games against 2013 NCAA Tournament participants North Carolina A&T (Nov. 11) and at No. 12 Oklahoma State (Nov. 12).
Clint Burgi is the assistant athletic director for sports information at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.