Jessup’s Phillips earns National Player of the Week
ROCKLIN– Just one day prior, William Jessup University men’s basketball player Keith Phillips was awarded his second Golden State Athletic Conference Player of the Week award. And this week, the NAIA named the starting senior forward the National Player of the Week, the program’s first-ever honor of its kind.
“With so many great players in the NAIA, it’s a great honor for Keith to be recognized as the National Player of the Week,” head coach Lance Von Vogt said. “We’ve had some great players here in the past that were close to earning this honor; however, this is the first time that we’ve had someone who actually accomplished it.”
Phillips continues to ring in the accolades during his final season. He has been named a Preseason All-American, two-time GSAC Player of the Week and now National Player of the Week.
This past week was a record-setting one for Phillips, tallying the most points (40) a WJU men’s player has ever scored in a single contest over University of St. Katherine. He also holds the No. 2 slot with 35 points, inked earlier this season.
He also had 10 rebounds against St. Katherine to record his fourth double-double of the season. He just missed another double-double Saturday against UC Merced, with 23 points and nine rebounds.
“Ultimately, it’s a team award because you don’t win this honor unless you win the games,” Von Vogt continued. “Additionally, Keith only scored three unassisted baskets this past week beyond his offensive rebound put-backs, which means his teammates were instrumental in his accomplishment.”
The 2018 All-American totaled 63 points and 19 rebounds last week, shooting .694 from the field and going 3-for-5 from beyond the arc. He was also 10-for-13 from the charity stripe.
“It’s an honor to receive this award and means a lot to me,” Phillips said. “I just want to give thanks to my teammates, coaches and my family.”
The 6-foot-5-inch forward is in the top 10 in the country for points per game (21.3) and overall points (277). Halfway through the season, Phillips has a total 755 career points, eighth best in the record books and 331 rebounds, which puts him sixth overall in program history.
William Jessup also moved into the NAIA’s National Top 25.