Fox, Fazekas win top WAC awards for third year
The Western Athletic Conference men's basketball award winners, as selected by the league's nine head coaches, were announced Sunday, March 4.
Nevada head coach Mark Fox was named the Don Haskins Coach of the Year for the third straight season, becoming the first coach in WAC history to achieve this honor. The third-year coach led the Wolf Pack to its fourth consecutive regular-season WAC title with a 14-2 record. Nevada is 27-3 overall, its fourth straight year with at least 25 wins.
"It's an honor to be recognized by my peers," Fox said. "But I have been fortunate to coach great players and work with a great coaching staff. Being named Coach of the Year is a credit to our players and coaches."
The conference first team is led by Nevada senior forward Nick Fazekas who was also voted the WAC's Player of the Year for the third straight season. In conference games, Fazekas led the WAC in scoring (21.1 points per game), rebounding (10.5 rebounds per game) and shooting percentage (.571).
"Nick had another terrific season," Fox said. "He came back this year as a better player and had another great year. I'm proud that he could win the WAC Player of the Year award again."
Fazekas was the only repeat first-team selection from last year and is the second player in WAC history to be named Player of the Year three times in his career, joining Utah's Keith Van Horn (1995-97).
Fazekas said: "It's an honor be named the WAC Player of the Year for the third consecutive year. I've always cared about wins more than individual honors, but it is great to be recognized by the league coaches. I am also really happy to see so many of my teammates honored for their accomplishments."
It is the fourth year in a row that Nevada has had the Player of the Year as Kirk Snyder won the award in 2003-04. Boise State's Coby Karl, Nevada's Marcelus Kemp, New Mexico State's Justin Hawkins and Utah State's Jaycee Carroll were also first-team selections.
The All-WAC second-teamers this year were Ramon Sessions, Nevada; Quinton Hosley, Fresno State; Dominic McGuire, Fresno State; Matt Lojeski, Hawaii; and Trey McDowell, Louisiana Tech.
Boise State guard Anthony Thomas was named the WAC's Freshman of the Year. In 16 conference games, Thomas averaged 5.0 points per contest, 1.7 rebounds per game and had 24 assists and 19 steals.
The 2007 WAC Basketball Tournament is this week at the Pan American Center in Las Cruces, N.M. The men's teams will compete March 6, 8-10, with the women's competition March 6-7 and 9-10. ESPN Full Court will carry the men's quarterfinal and semifinal games while ESPN2 will show the men's championship game on Saturday, March 10 at 7:00 p.m. (MT). All of the games will also be on WAC.tv except for the men's title game.