Myles Taylor, a 6-7 forward for UT Martin, has been named the Ohio Valley Conference Freshman of the Year, the league announced Tuesday.
Taylor was also named to the five-man All-Newcomer team, the only freshman to be named to the award recognizing the OVC’s best freshmen or transfers from this past season.
The honors came despite his suspension from the team for the final three games of the season.
It was a memorable season for Taylor, who is the third Skyhawk to earn OVC Freshman of the Year accolades.
The Little Rock, Ark., native brought home the league’s weekly Freshman of the Week award five times and was the top freshman scorer (13.7 points per game) and rebounder (5.2 per game) in the conference.
“We are proud of Myles’ accomplishments on the floor,” UT Martin head coach Jason James said. “Now our goal is to get Myles to be consistent in his play like he was down the stretch in the OVC.
“We want him to continue to understand that being a great basketball player is just a small part of being a student-athlete. We need to get him and keep him on the right track.”
Earning starts in 27 of his 28 games played, Taylor was one of the league’s best scoring threats on the block, leading the Skyhawks in scoring nine times. He reached double-figures in the scoring column in 21 games, including 11 straight and 17 of 19 to close out the season.
Taylor tallied 20 points or more on five different occasions, including a career-best 31 points in 31 minutes in a double overtime victory at Kennesaw State on Feb. 14.
Logging 24.4 minutes per contest, Taylor converted 49 percent of his field goal attempts (128-for-261).
He even demonstrated the ability to extend his range, as he drilled a pair of 3-pointers at nationally-ranked Mississippi State on Nov. 25.
Taylor collected four double-doubles (at Ohio, at UAB, at Eastern Kentucky and at home against Eastern Illinois) and led the team in rebounding in 10 games.
In addition to leading UT Martin in rebounds per game, Taylor also registered team-highs in blocked shots (21, 10th best in the OVC), free throws made (125) and free throws attempted (167).
In his last three games of the season, he knocked down 94.2 percent of his attempts from the charity stripe (33-for-35, including a career-best 14-of-15 showing against Eastern Illinois on Feb. 11).
Published in The Messenger 2.29.12