Rui Hachimura added to his accolades on Friday night when he was named the winner of the Julius Erving Award. The award goes to the nation’s top small forward. He beat out Marial Shayok (Iowa State), Caleb Martin (Nevada), Admiral Schofield (Tennessee) and DeAndre Hunter (Virginia).
Rui also earned WCC Player of the Year honors along with being named a second team All-American. The junior forward averaged 19.7 points and 6.5 rebounds, while shooting 59 percent. He didn’t really play small forward in Gonzaga’s system, but we’ll allow it. He deserves all the awards he gets.
When he added the Julius Erving Award to his collection and got to shake Dr. J’s hand, he added some of his own personality to the show.
Gonzaga’s Rui Hachimura is the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year. His reaction to shaking Dr J’s hand when winning the award: “His hand is very big.” pic.twitter.com/CYWE1s98Oa— Sam Adams SWX (@SamAdamsTV) April 13, 2019
Coach Mark Few was in the audience smiling, along with Rui’s mother, which was cool to see. He talked about his growth the last three years in the program and how Coach Few builds a winning culture in the program.
With the awards season coming to an end and everyone finally relaxing in Spokane soon, we can probably expect a few NBA draft announcements next week.
Hachimura did not get the ultimate prize of a National Championship, but he still racked up some serious hardware in his remarkable junior season. Congrats to Rui Hachimura!