The USC Trojans have a couple of seniors receive Pac-12 basketball honors on Monday morning. Trojans senior forward Bennie Boatwright was name to All Pac-12 First Team while junior forward Nick Rakocevic received All Pac-12 honorable mention. The news comes via USC athletics twitter account.
Congratulations to senior captain @benniebuckets__ on earning Pac-12 First Team honors! #FightOn pic.twitter.com/zYf6O0UNdF— USC Men's Basketball (@USC_Hoops) March 11, 2019
Pac-12 named 10 players to the first team honor which is unheard of in a way. The conference has had a down year to the point where it’s possible that only two teams could play in the upcoming NCAA tournament. While in a way it takes away from the honor, make no doubt about it that Boatwright has been one of the Pac-12’s best players this season.
Bennie Boatwright opted to forgo the NBA draft and return to USC for his senior season following having season ending knee surgery. This season Boatwright has by far been the teams MVP, averaging a team leading 18.1 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 2.3 assist. Offensively he’s been the bright spot for the Trojans during a season where the team has battled injuries and up and down play on the court. Boatwright has had an outstanding season which featured him making a record breaking ten three pointers at Cal back in February.
USC junior forward Nick Rakocevic on the other hand has been the conference most improved player this season. The junior leads the team in rebounds with 9.3 per game, which is also top 5 in the Pac-12. Coming into the season Rakocevic had to fill a void that was left by Chimezie Metu, who departed for the NBA draft following his junior year. His production in the paint has really improved on both ends of the floor. Rakocevic has seen a spike in points and blocks averaging 14.9 points and 1.4 blocks per game.