Senior forward Ben Averkamp is the first Academic All-American in Loyola men's basketball history
 
Senior forward Ben Averkamp is the first Academic All-American in Loyola men's basketball history
 
 
Averkamp Named Loyola's First Men's Basketball Academic All-American

Feb. 21, 2013

CHICAGO - Ben Averkamp (Germantown, Wis./Germantown), a senior forward on the Loyola men's basketball team, has been named Capital One Second Team Academic All-America it was announced today. Averkamp is just the eighth Loyola individual, and the first-ever member of the men's basketball program, to garner Capital One Academic All-America accolades.

Averkamp was joined on the Capital One Academic All-America Second Team by Matthew Dellavedova (St. Mary's), Nathan Healy (Appalachian State), Peyton Siva (Louisville), and Andrew Smith (Butler). Aaron Craft (Ohio State), Kelly Olynyk (Gonzaga), Mason Plumlee (Duke), Matthew Sullivan (Brown), and Cody Zeller (Indiana) comprised the first team.

Although he has missed the last four games due to injury, Averkamp is one of the top players in the Horizon League and leads the team, while also ranking among the top five in the conference in both scoring (15.3 ppg) and rebounding (6.5 rpg) this season for a Loyola team that has doubled its win total from a year ago (7).

One of only 19 players in Loyola's storied history to have racked up over 1,000 points and 500 rebounds in his career, the team captain enters this weekend's action needing just three blocked shots to become the first player in school history with 1,300 points, 600 rebounds, 150 assists, and 150 blocks.

As a junior in 2011-12, Averkamp collected Second Team All-Horizon League honors to become the first Loyola player since 2007 to be a first or second team all-conference pick after putting up 15.4 ppg and 7.1 rpg, both career-best averages. This season, he has scored in double figures in 18 of his 23 appearances, four times scoring 20 or more points, including a season-best, 27-point performance in a November 18 victory against Maryland-Eastern Shore. Averkamp was at his best when Loyola gave then No. 19 Michigan State all it could handle in a 73-61 loss on December 8, going for 25 points and eight boards.

Equally accomplished off the court, the biology major is a two-time Capital One First Team Academic All-District V selection (2012, 2013), and also has been named to the Horizon League Men's Basketball All-Academic Team (2011, 2012), I-AAA Men's Basketball Scholar-Athlete Team (2012), National Association of Basketball Coaches Honors Court (2012), National Jesuit Men's Basketball All-Academic Team (2012), and Horizon League Academic Honor Roll (2010, 2011, 2012). During his career, the 6-foot-8 forward has been a four-time Horizon League Male Scholar-Athlete of the Month honoree and in addition to being a member of Loyola's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), he is also the president of the Horizon League chapter of SAAC.

Loyola's last Academic All-America selection came in 2010, when men's soccer defender Will Martin captured second team honors.