After reading the post title, I'm assuming all of you readers will know where this is going. Award description may or may not read as follows: Award for the exemplary performance of a senior athlete on the Basketball team of Syracuse University. The recipient will have shown leadership, skill and all around integrity on the court throughout the season.
If you read that inscription, there is only one option on our roster that can fit the bill. Drum roll please...
The unanimous winner of the Syracuse Orange Blogger Award for Best Senior goes to Demetris Nichols.
Ok, It's probably not much of a shock, but he definitely deserved every bit of the recognition he received, and possibly a bit more. On to the rationale. Though some felt compelled to write on their thoughts of why our recipient should be the best senior, it seems that others were able to sum it up in a single word... "Nichols."
Both of the Cuse Country guys, as well as myself opted for the single word, quick and to the point answer.
Demetrius picked up his scoring and played better defense. He make himself more of a game changer, and a leader.
~Howie from Sports Night with Howie Mansfield
Ray from OrangeHoops decided that one word wasn't enough, going for the massive four word answer: "Demetris Nichols... by far."
Sean over at TNIAAM summed it up as such:
However Harris played and Devendorf ran the point, we knew it would be up to the senior frontcourt to define this season. And we certainly did live and die with their play, none more so than Demetris Nichols. He stepped up and became a leader on the stat sheet as well as on the court. He leaves us wishing we had one more season with him.Similarly Matt from Orange44:
As a member of a senior class that underwhelmed from the word "go," Nichols clearly realized much of the potential that many claimed he had during his recruitment. He will go down in Syracuse history as one of the more under-appreciated players in the Boeheim era -- a sad fact considering the number of Orange players that many recognize as "great" -- but the fact remains that he was the primary reason Syracuse won the number of games it did this season.Though all the seniors will be missed dearly, and their heart will be tough to replace, this award belongs far and away to Demetris. All in all Nichols has undoubtedly stepped his game up a huge notch from his Junior campaign, was mere votes away from a Big East POY award and was voted First Team All Big East, and Honorable Mention All America. There was no person during any point in this season that did as much to step up and rise to the occasion as much as Demetris did, save maybe Devendorf down the stretch. (He's not a senior, therefore not eligible for this one, check out the Sophmore awards though, he might make a showing...) I would say that qualifies him as the Best Senior and a worthy recipient.
Check out Ray over at OrangeHoops for the final presentation of the day, and be sure to tune in at noon tomorrow with Howie for the start to the 2nd day of festivities.