March 3, 2009
On Monday Santa Clara senior center John Bryant was named the West Coast Conference Player of the Year. Tuesday he was named the WCC Player of the Month for February after averaging 21.3 ppg, 15.3 rpg and 2.1 bpg in 35.9 mpg last month. He shot 63.3% from the field and hit 49 of his 59 free throw attempts (83.1%), including knocking 11 of 13 twice and 12 of 13 from the charity stripe once. He scored at least 16 points in every game in February, including 21+ in five times.
When told he was named the WCC Player of Month Bryant said "Awesome! That's awesome," said the 6' 11, 275lb. center. "It's a nice exclamation point to my final season after being named Player of the Year yesterday. Like I said yesterday on the teleconference with the media, there are really some good players in this league and with Gonzaga going undefeated in the league, I am really honored to win an honor like this month. It gives me additional motivation going into the WCC Tournament to continue to play well. We are going there to win the WCC Tournament and to do that, we all have to be together."
Bryant broke the single season blocks (76, his own record, 2008) and single season rebounds record (409 Dennis Awtrey, 1970) at SCU in February. He also moved up to No. 6 on the all-time Bay Area rebounds list and No. 6 in the Bay Area in a single season. He is 20 rebounds from tying Awtrey's career school record of 1,135 boards.
He is ranked No. 1 in the country in offensive efficiency (bbstate.com). Bryant is No. 1 nationally in rebounds per game, No. 12 in field goal percentage, No. 15 in blocks nationally, and No. 68 in points per game (March 2). He leads the country in total rebounds (430), setting the single season school record vs. Portland. He leads the country with 24 double-doubles and with five 20+ point/20+ rebound games - including two in the month of February. His 48 career double-doubles are No. 2 of active players nationally.
Bryant is the first player in Bronco history to score 1,600+ points, gather 1,100+ rebounds and block 200+ shots. The No. 7 center nationally as ranked by Rivals.com, he collects 18.0 ppg and 13.9 rpg in 31.0 mpg this season; and is knocking down 60.7% of his shots, averaging 2.5 bpg.
This season Bryant leads the WCC in all games in field goal percentage, rebounds, defensive rebounds, offensive rebounds and blocked shots; and he is No. 3 in scoring. In WCC games, Bryant led the conference in field goal percentage, rebounds, offensive rebounds, defensive rebounds, blocks; and was No. 2 in scoring. Bryant's 15.1 rpg average in WCC games is the highest clip in the WCC since former San Francisco standout Bill Cartwright averaged 16.1 rpg during the 1978-79 season. Bryant was named the WCC Player of the Week three times this year.