Damian Lillard Named 2009-10 Big Sky MVP - Franklin Session Named Newcomer of the Year, Steve Panos Earns Second Team Honors
Courtesy: Weber State  
Release: Thursday 03/03/2010
Courtesy: Weber State
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OGDEN, UTAH  - For the second year in a row, a Weber State Wildcat has been named the MVP of the Big Sky Conference.  Damian Lillard (6-2, 185 Soph. / Oakland, California), the Big Sky ‘s overall leading scorer, was a unanimous selection by the league’s coaches for Most Valuable Player. He was also named, for the second year in a row, First Team All-Big Sky Conference as well.  Last year, WSU guard Kellen McCoy was named the league MVP.

“This is a tremendous honor for Damian and our team,” said WSU head coach Randy Rahe. “Damian has worked extremely hard on and off the court to improve his game, become a better player and a better teammate. He’s certainly worthy of the recognition.”

Lillard is averaging 19.7 points per game. That leads the Big Sky Conference, overall, for the season. In the 16 regular season league games, he averaged 20.7 points per game and was second to Portland State’s Dominic Waters (20.9.)  Lillard was fourth, in overall games, in assists at 3.8, fifth in free throw percentage (.848) and first in Three-Point Field Goals Made per game at 2.7 a contest.  Last year, Lillard became the first true freshman in Big Sky  history to earn First Team honors.  He also was named the 2008-09 Big Sky Freshman of the Year as well. His 36 point game at home vs. Eastern Washington on Jan. 23 is the highest scoring game by a player in the Big Sky this season.

Franklin Session (6-3, 175 Jr. Forward / Los Angeles, California) was named the 2009-10 Big Sky Conference Newcomer of the Year, and named Second Team All-Big Sky Conference.  Session is averaging 10.5 points and 6.0 rebounds, overall, and 11.9 points and 6.2 rebounds in Big Sky Conference play.  Session transferred to Weber State after playing one year at Irvine Valley JC his freshman year and at Saddleback JC his sophomore season.  He has played in all 28 games and been a starter 25 times.

He recorded four “double/double” scoring and rebounding games this season with a single game scoring high of 24 at home vs. Portland State and a single game rebounding high of 18 on the road vs. Sacramento State.

“I can’t tell you how proud I am of Franklin. He has worked his tail off to come in and fit into our program. He’s become a great teammate and is one of the most unselfish players in our league. This is a tremendous honor for him and our team.” said Rahe.

Steve Panos (6-8, 245 Sr. Center / Salt Lake City, Utah) was named Second Team All-Big Sky Conference. Panos,  one of two seniors on this year’s team, is the only three-year letterman on the squad. He is second on the team in scoring at 11.3 points per game and second in rebounding at 5.3.  He is shooting just over 55 percent from the field and 76 percent at the line.  He scored a career high 29 points in WSU’s 81-76 win at home vs. Northern Colorado and added nine rebounds.

“Steve may be the hardest working player on our team,” said Rahe. “He’s improved every year he has played and has established himself as one of the best post players in the Big Sky and the intermountain West. He’s been a tremendous example to our younger players on and off the court. I am really happy for Steve and the year he is having this season.”

The Wildcats are awaiting next week’s Big Sky Conference Tournament semifinals and championship games on Tuesday and Wednesday, March 9-10 at the Dee Events Center.

Weber State Men's Basketball

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