Thames Named AP All-America Honorable Mention
March 31, 2014
SAN DIEGO - San Diego State men's basketball senior guard Xavier Thames has been named a 2014 Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American. The award is the first of his career.
A native of Sacramento, Calif., Thames is the fourth Aztec in the last four seasons to earn All-America recognition from the AP. Kawhi Leonard was a second-team honoree in 2011 and was followed by Jamaal Franklin, who picked up honorable mention accolades, in 2012 and 2013. Overall, Thames is the 16th player in school history to be an All-American, the eighth to pick up AP honors and the fifth during Steve Fisher's tenure at SDSU.
The Mountain West Player of the Year led San Diego State in nearly every statistical category, including scoring (17.6), assists (3.2), steals (1.6), three-point field-goal percentage (.372), free-throw percentage (.834) and minutes played (31.3), while also pulling down 2.9 rebounds.
In 36 games, all starting assignments, Thames scored in double figures 31 times and broke the 20-point barrier 12 times, including his final three games, which all took place in the NCAA tournament. He scored a career-high 31 points at Utah State and came up one short of matching it when he poured in 30 in the NCAA second-round victory over North Dakota State. In three NCAA tournament games, Thames averaged 26.0 points, which leads all players (min. 3 games played) heading into the Final Four.
Thames helped SDSU to one of its greatest seasons ever as it compiled a 31-5 record, won the MW regular-season championship and reached the NCAA Sweet 16 for the second time in the last four seasons. The 31 victories are the second-most in program history, the conference title is the school's league-best eighth crown and the regional semifinals appearance is the farthest the Aztecs have advanced in their Division I history. San Diego State was able to accomplish this despite being picked to finish in fourth place in the MW preseason poll and after receiving zero votes in the AP preseason top-25 poll.