(Editor’s note: story by Montana Sports Information)
KANSAS CITY, MO – The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) recognized the nation’s top basketball student-athletes on Tuesday, including a trio of Montana stars.
Jamar Akoh, Fabijan Krslovic and Michael Oguine were each named to the 2017-18 NABC Honors Court, an award that annually recognizes the talents and gifts displayed off the court and in the classroom. To be eligible, a student-athlete must be a junior or senior with at least a 3.2 grade-point average during the academic year.
Montana is one of four Big Sky institutions with three honorees. Over the 12-year history of the award, UM has had 10 recipients, including seven in the past three seasons under head coach Travis DeCuire. The three honorees in 2017-18 are the most ever by Montana.
Akoh, a Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., native who is studying management, completed his first season playing for the Griz in 2017-18 after transferring from Cal State Fullerton. The forward ranked in the top 15 in the Big Sky for scoring, rebounding and field-goal percentage, earning third-team all-conference honors. He was awarded the team’s Dennis T. Murphy Coaches’ Award.
Krslovic joins Brandon Gfeller as the program’s only two-time NABC Honors court recipient. On the court he played in a school-record 132 games and ranks in the top 10 for career steals. Off the court, his accolades are countless, including UM’s Grizzly Cup award – given to the top male who exemplifies the term student-athlete in all facets – in addition to the team’s Allan Nielsen Award winner (best represents Griz Basketball) and Naseby Rhinehart Award recipient (most inspirational player). The four-time Academic All-Big Sky player graduated in May with a degree in finance and a minor in math.
On the court, Oguine was named the Big Sky Defensive Player of the Year and Big Sky Championship Most Outstanding Player. He led UM with 48 steals and ranked second for scoring, assists, rebounding and blocked shots. On the court, the marketing major earned an Academic All-Big Sky nod for the third consecutive season.
Montana’s NABC Honors Court Recipients
2017-18: Jamar Akoh, Fabijan Krslovic, Michael Oguine
2016-17: Brandon Gfeller, Fabijan Krslovic
2015-16: Brandon Gfeller, Jack Lopez
2013-14: Jordan Gregory
2006-07: Bryan Ellis, Jordan Hasquet
About the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC)
Located in Kansas City, Missouri, the NABC was founded in 1927 by Phog Allen, the legendary basketball coach at the University of Kansas. Allen, a student of James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, organized coaches into this collective group to serve as Guardians of the Game. The NABC currently has nearly 5,000 members consisting primarily of university and college men’s basketball coaches. All members of the NABC are expected to uphold the core values of being a Guardian of the Game by bringing attention to the positive aspects of the sport of basketball and the role coaches play in the academic and athletic lives of today’s student-athletes. The four core values of being a Guardian of the Game are advocacy, leadership, service and education. For additional information about the NABC, its programs and membership, go to www.nabc.org.