TOWSON, Md. - - Belmont men's basketball junior forward/center Scott Saunders (New Orleans, La.) has been named to the 2010-11 Capital One Academic All-America University Division Men's Basketball Third Team.
Saunders, who ranks among league leaders in six statistical categories, has been an invaluable part of Belmont's Atlantic Sun Conference regular season championship team. Named Atlantic Sun Player of the Week Dec. 21, Saunders has 15 double figure scoring games and three double-doubles this season for the Bruins. The 6-10 post man ranks among the NCAA leaders in points per 40 minutes played, and recorded a career-high 24 points vs. Marist Nov. 22.
"Our team and coaching staff are very happy to see Scott gain this recognition," Belmont head coach Rick Byrd said upon learning of Saunders' honor. "There are very few awards more meaningful than Academic All-American, since it measures excellence on the floor and in the classroom. Scott is a worthy recipient and an outstanding representative of Belmont."
Saunders, who holds a 3.84 GPA in his chosen major of finance, becomes the latest in a long line of Bruin student-athletes to earn Captial One Academic All-America honors.
This marks the 18th time a Belmont student-athlete has received Academic All-America honors.
In fact, Belmont men's basketball leads the nation in Capital One Academic All-Americans since 2000-01 with nine. Saunders joins Wes Burtner (2001, 2002), Adam Mark (2002, 2003, 2004), Justin Hare (2007, 2008) and Andy Wicke (2009) so honored.
To be eligible for Academic All-America consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 on a 4.00 scale, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her media relations' director.