|SENIOR CLASS AWARD FINALISTS|
|Jevon Carter||West Virginia|
|Angel Delgado||Seton Hall|
|A.J. Jacobson||North Dakota State|
|Justin Johnson||Western Kentucky|
|Luke Morrison||Army West Point|
HOUSTON – For an outstanding career in many facets, University of Houston senior guard Rob Gray was recognized Thursday morning as one of 10 finalists for the 2017-18 Senior CLASS Award.
Voting is now underway with fan balloting counting for one third of the total with the remaining two-thirds determined by NCAA Division I coaches and national media members. Fans may vote once a day on the Senior CLASS Award site through March 19.
To be eligible for the award, student-athletes must be seniors and have notable achievements in the areas of community, classroom, character and competition. As a senior and three-year letterman in 2017-18, much was expected of Gray from Head Coach Kelvin Sampson, and he lived up to those expectations.
This season, Gray ranks second in the league with 18.3 points per game and ranks among the league’s top-seven leaders in assists (4.2, 5th), free throw percentage (82.1, 7th) and assist-turnover ratio (2.0, 4th). He is one of only two players to stand among The American’s top-two leaders in both scoring and assists.
He has scored at least 20 points in 11 games this season, including a career-high 37 points against Drexel during the Paradise Jam on Nov. 17.
In addition to his scoring, Gray leads the Cougars with 4.2 assists per game and has dished out at least five assists in each of the last seven games.
Gray also has established himself in the Houston records book. The Forest City, N.C., native ranks 15th in Houston history with 1,440 career points and was the 12th fastest player in school history to reach that milestone.
He led the American Athletic Conference with 20.6 points per game in 2016-17 and was named to the USBWA All-District VII Team, All-American Athletic Conference First Team, NABC All-District 25 Second Team and the Gulf Coast Showcase All-Tournament Team.
This past summer, Gray also was one of 20 players selected from around the nation to serve as a counselor at the CP3 Elite Camp in North Carolina.
Off the court, Gray received his bachelor’s degree in sociology, becoming the first member of his family to earn a college degree.
He is often seen leading his teammates on the court in practice and in games but is also quick to take a younger teammate aside after practice to offer advice and guidance.
Gray has participated in several community service projects throughout his career. He assisted in unloading and distributing boxes during Sampson’s Hurricane Harvey Relief Donation Drive, met with and served Thanksgiving lunches to Star of Hope Mission residents and played Buddy Basketball with special needs students among other events.
Gray was joined as a finalist by Shawn Anderson (Navy), Vladimir Brodziansky (TCU), Jevon Carter (West Virginia), Angel Delgado (Seton Hall), A.J. Jackson (North Dakota State), Justin Johnson (Western Kentucky), Yante Maten (Georgia), Luke Morrison (Army West Point) and Johnathan Williams (Gonzaga).
Thursday’s recognition was the latest accolade for Gray. Earlier this week, he was named one of 10 finalists for the Jerry West Award, presented annually to the nation’s top shooting guard.
Gray and the Cougars return to action at 8 p.m., Thursday, when they play host to American Athletic Conference rival SMU inside H&PE Arena.
That will be the start of a three-game homestand for the Cougars, who have posted a 10-0 record in home games during the regular season.
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