Oct. 31, 2012
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - Loyola University Maryland senior guard Robert Olson was named one of 30 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award, an honor that recognizes student-athletes who excel in the classroom and on the court.
Olson is the first Loyola men's basketball player to be named a candidate in the 13-year history of the award. He is one of two Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference players on this year's list, joining Siena College's O.D. Anosike.
Last season, Olson averaged 11.1 points per game and emerged as one of the top shooters in college basketball. He shot 45.1-percent from the field and 43.1-percent from 3-point range. Earlier this week, he was named No. 36 on the list of the Top-50 shooters in college basketball by CBSSports.com's Jeff Goodman.
"There is no one who is more deserving than Bobby Olson," said Loyola Head Coach Jimmy Patsos. "He has been a leader for us on, and off, the court, since the day he stepped foot onto our campus."
Olson was named to the All-MAAC Third Team and later the MAAC All-Tournament Team while helping the Greyhounds win the league title and advance to the NCAA Championships for the first time in 18 years.
He was third in the MAAC in 3-point field goal percentage as a junior (66-of-153, .431), and his 66 3-pointers made are sixth-most in school single-season history. He matched his career-high with 21 points at Iona on January 15 in the midst of an 11-game stretch in which he scored 11 or more points from January 7-February 12, raising his scoring average from 8.8 to 11.9 in the process.
The senior co-captain enters the 2012-2013 season ranked fourth at Loyola in career 3-point percentage (138-of-336, .4107) sixth in career 3-pointers made (138) and eighth in 3-pointers attempted (336).
Olson is a finance major in Loyola's Sellinger School of Busines where he has earned Dean's List recognition in the classroom and multiple opportunities in the business community. This past summer, he interned for a venture capital firm, Wasabi Ventures, and he has also been a speaker to and involved with the Catholic Business Network of America.
He has been involved in various outreach through Loyola, including working with Beans & Bread, a local shelter and soup kitchen. He also served as a volunteer with the ARC of Montgomery County, an organization that outreaches to area handicapped. Robert has served as a speaker and counselor at the Loyola Basketball Camp and the Georgetown Prep Basketball Camps, and he was a speaker for the Catholic Business Network of America.
To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition. The complete list of candidates follows this release.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
The candidate classes will be narrowed to 10 men's and 10 women's finalists midway through the regular season, and those names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one men's finalist and one women's finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.
Past winners of the award include Purdue's Robbie Hummel (2012), Brigham Young's Jimmer Fredette (2011), North Carolina's Tyler Hansborough (2009), Duke's J.J. Reddick (2006) and Shane Battier (2001) and Maryland's Juan Dixon, a player coached by Patsos while he was an assistant with the Terrapins.
He is the seventh student-athlete from Loyola to be named a candidate in their respective sport. Earlier this year, women's soccer's Nichole Schiro was named a candidate.
Read more about the award and this year's other candidates by clicking here.