Four WSU men’s basketball student-athletes have been named to the 2009 Pacific-10 Men’s Basketball All-Academic First Team.
They are Aron Baynes, Daven Harmeling, Nikola Koprivica and Taylor Rochestie. The four first-team representatives mark the most in WSU history.
Each of the last two seasons three Cougars have earned spots on the all-academic first team. Last year WSU set a school record with five all-academic honorees as Harmeling and Rochestie, along with Robbie Cowgill, earned first team accolades and Baynes and Koprivica were named to the second team.
A native of Cairns, Australia, Baynes carries a 3.24 grade point average and is a movement studies major. The senior is an all-academic honoree for the third-straight season and makes his second appearance on the first team (2007). On the court Baynes started all 33 games for the Cougars this season, averaging a team-second-best 12.7 points per game. He led the team with 7.5 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game. At Washington, March 7, Baynes became the 30th Cougar to score 1,000 career points and ended his career ranked 23rd in the WSU record books with 1,064 points. He also ranks in the career record books for field goal percentage (eighth, .546), rebounds (11th, 653), blocks (t-seventh, 93), blocks average (14th, 0.76) and free throws made (17th, 275).
Harmeling, a redshirt-senior from Grand Junction, Colo., is a health and fitness major with a 3.54 grade point average. He is a first team honoree for the third-straight year, becoming the third Cougar to accomplish that feat (Robbie Cowgill 2006-08; and Carlos Daniel, 1996-98). He played 30 of the Cougars’ 33 games this season, starting 18 contests. Harmeling averaged 3.8 points per game this season and ended his career ranked in the WSU career record books in 3-point field goal attempts (11th, 342), 3-point field goals made (12th, 124), and 3-point field goal percentage (16th, .363). He is a two-time ESPN The Magazine District VIII All-Academic honoree.
Koprivica, a junior from Belgrade, Serbia, is majoring in International Business with a 3.39 grade point average. This is the guard’s second-consecutive all-academic honor after being named to the second team last season. He played all 33 games for the Cougars, starting 18 while averaging 21 minutes per game. Koprivica averaged 3.1 points, 2.4 rebounds and a team third-best 1.6 assists per game this season.
A native of Santa Barbara, Calif., Rochestie is a communication major with a 3.37 grade point average. The redshirt senior earns Pac-10 All-Academic First Team honors for the second-consecutive season, having played three seasons for the Cougars after transferring from Tulane in the middle of the 2005-06 season. Rochestie led the team in scoring and assists this season with 13.2 points and 4.5 assists per game, starting all 33 games. The 6-1 point guard holds the WSU season and career records for free throw percentage with a season mark of .891 and a career clip of .835. Rochestie holds six other top-20 career marks in the WSU record books. At the conclusion of this season, he was named to the All-Pacific-10 Conference First Team and became the second-consecutive Cougar to be named the men’s basketball Pac-10 Scholar Athlete of the Year. This year he was named to the ESPN The Magazine District VIII All-Academic First Team.
Arizona State’s Derek Glasser joins the four Cougars on the first team. WSU leads all Pac-10 schools with its four honorees while California and Arizona State each had two student-athletes earn all-academic honors. To be eligible for selection to the academic team, a student-athlete must have a minimum 3.0 overall grade-point average and be either a starter or significant contributor.