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Birch Repeats As MW Defensive Player Of The Year

Khem Birch was selected as the MW Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight season.

Khem Birch was selected as the MW Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight season.

March 10, 2014

MW Men's Basketball All-Conference Video Announcement | MW Men's Basketball All-Conference Release

LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - UNLV men's basketball junior forward Khem Birch was selected as the Mountain West's Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight season as the league announced its all-conference awards on Monday.

Birch was also selected second team All-MW and named to the All-Defensive Team, while junior guard Bryce Dejean-Jones was named third team All-MW and junior forward Roscoe Smith was honorable mention.

Birch matched a league record with 69 blocked shots during conference play this season, tying Wyoming's Justin Williams (2005-06). He averaged a league-high 3.8 rejections per game en route to setting the MW junior class record for most blocks in a season of league competition. Birch registered at least one block in each of the 18 MW contests, including 11 outings with four or more. His nine-block performance at Utah State on Feb. 15 set a career high and MW junior class single-game record for most against a conference opponent, while tying for third in league play overall.

Birch averaged 11.9 points per game, while grabbing 10.6 rebounds per game in league play. He is the third player in MW history to receive back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year honors (UNLV's Marcus Banks, 2001-03; Wyoming's Justin Williams, 2004-06).

Dejean-Jones led the Runnin' Rebels in scoring during MW play with 14.1 ppg, while averaging 2.7 assists per game (second on the team). He was also second on the team in steals with 15 and ranked 11th in the MW in scoring during conference play.

Smith averaged 9.3 ppg and 9.3 rpg during conference play. His rebounding average ranked third in the conference for league-only games.

The league's 11 head coaches along with a select media panel voted on the conference awards.

UNLV has had at least three players honored by the league in each of the last five seasons.

The Runnin' Rebels are the No. 4 seed for this week's MW Tournament at the Thomas & Mack Center. UNLV will face No. 5 seed Wyoming in a quarterfinal matchup on Thursday, March 13 at 12:30 p.m.

2013-14 ALL-MOUNTAIN WEST MEN’S BASKETBALL TEAM
(Selected by media and head coaches)

First Team All-Mountain West

Name, Team, Cl., Pos., Ht., Wt., City, State
Cameron Bairstow, New Mexico, Sr., F, 6-9, 250, Brisbane, Australia
Deonte Burton, Nevada*, Sr., G, 6-1, 190, Los Angeles, Calif.
Kendall Williams, New Mexico**, Sr., G, 6-4, 180, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
Xavier Thames, San Diego State, Sr., G, 6-3, 195, Sacramento, Calif.
Larry Nance Jr., Wyoming, Jr., F, 6-8, 225, Akron, Ohio

Second Team All-Mountain West

Name, Team, Cl., Pos., Ht., Wt., City, State
Anthony Drmic, Boise State*, Jr., G/F, 6-6, 196, Endeavor Hills, Victoria
Ryan Watkins, Boise State, Sr., F, 6-9, 229, Canyon Country, Calif.
Daniel Bejarano, Colorado State, Jr., G, 6-4, 202, Phoenix, Ariz.
Tyler Johnson, Fresno State, Sr., G, 6-4, 186, Mountain View, Calif.
Khem Birch, UNLV, Jr., F, 6-9, 220, Montreal, Quebec

Third Team All-Mountain West

Name, Team, Cl., Pos., Ht., Wt., City, State
Tre’ Coggins, Air Force, So., G, 6-2, 185, San Juan Capistrano, Calif.
J.J. Avila, Colorado State, Jr., F, 6-7, 246, McAllen, Texas
Alex Kirk, New Mexico*, Jr., C, 7-0, 250, Los Alamos, N.M.
Josh Davis, San Diego State, Sr., F, 6-8, 215, Raleigh, N.C.
Bryce Dejean-Jones, UNLV, Jr., G, 6-5, 210, Los Angeles, Calif.

All-Defensive Team

Name, Team, Cl., Pos., Ht., Wt., City, State
Alex Kirk, New Mexico, Jr., C, 7-0, 250, Los Alamos, N.M.
Kendall Williams, New Mexico, Sr., G, 6-4, 180, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
Skylar Spencer, San Diego State, So., F, 6-10, 235, Inglewood, Calif.
Xavier Thames, San Diego State, Sr., G, 6-3, 195, Sacramento, Calif.
Khem Birch, UNLV, Jr., F, 6-9, 220, Montreal, Quebec
Larry Nance Jr., Wyoming, Jr., F, 6-8, 225, Akron, Ohio

Honorable Mention All-Mountain West
Derrick Marks, Jr., G, Boise State
Marvelle Harris, So., G, Fresno State
Cole Huff, So., F, Nevada
Hugh Greenwood, Jr., G, New Mexico
JJ O’Brien, Jr., F, San Diego State
Winston Shepard, So., F, San Diego State
Roscoe Smith, Jr., F, UNLV
Spencer Butterfield, Sr., G/F, Utah State
Jarred Shaw, Sr., C, Utah State

Player of the Year
Xavier Thames, Sr., G, San Diego State

Defensive Player of the Year
Khem Birch, Jr., F, UNLV

Newcomer of the Year
Josh Davis, Sr., F, San Diego State

Freshman of the Year
Paul Watson, Fr., G/F, Fresno State

Sixth Man of the Year
Dwayne Polee II, Jr., F, San Diego State

Coach of the Year
Steve Fisher, San Diego State

*Indicates number of previous All-Conference selections

 

 

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