News From Terre Haute, Indiana

March 5, 2014

Odum, Smith, Arop recognized by MVC

Todd Golden
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Indiana State point guard Jake Odum doesn’t play baseball, but he did go 4-for-4 in his Sycamore career.

His 4-for-4 performance came in regards to his All-Missouri Valley Conference selections. Odum has been named to the all-MVC team in each of his four seasons, and for the second time in a year, Odum was named to the MVC’s first team.

Teammate Khristian Smith also received a major individual honor. Smith, a sophomore, earned the MVC’s Sixth Man Award. Senior Manny Arop also was named as an All-MVC honorable-mention selection.

Odum is just the second ISU player to ever earn All-MVC honors four times. John Sherman Williams (1983-86) was the only other Sycamore to pull off the feat. Along with Williams and Larry Bird, Odum is the only ISU player to be named to the First Team in consecutive seasons.

“Him and only three other guys have been first-team more than once. That’s doing something with all of the great players we’ve had here in the past,” ISU coach Greg Lansing said. “Jake turned this program into a highly-respected, better-thought of basketball program.”

Odum ranks seventh in the ISU all-time scoring chart with 1,511 points and is second in assists with 586 as well as fourth in steals with 200. His 571 career free throws is an Indiana State school record and Odum is the only player in MVC history with at least 500 career made free throws and 500 career assists. This season, Odum is averaging 13 points which ranks 13th in the MVC while his 4.6 assists per game average ranks second. He has hit 78.5 percent of his free throws to rank tied for ninth in the MVC and his 2.4 assist-to-turnover ratio ranks third in the conference.

Odum is joined by Wichita State’s Fred Van Vleet, Cleanthony Early and Ron Baker on the first team, as well as Evansville’s D.J. Balentine and Northern Iowa’s Seth Tuttle. A tie for the last spot created a six-man First Team. Van Vleet was named the MVC’s Player of the Year.

Smith is the first ISU player to earn the Sixth Man Award, given by the MVC since the 1995 season.

Smith played in all 30 games and earned just five starts while he averaged 11.0 and 4.3 rebounds per game. He scored a career-high 28 points on the road against Belmont and had 16 double-digit scoring performances, including a MVC-high 27 points on the road against Evansville.

Smith set winning the Sixth Man Award as his goal and bought into being ISU’s energy guy off the bench.

“Khristian said that was his goal. It speaks volumes about what kind of teammate he is,” Lansing said.

Arop heads into the conference tournament averaging 11.0 points and 4.6 rebounds to rank 15th in the league.

Lansing was more impressed with his defensive improvement.

“He’s a tremendous defender. In my opinion, he should have been on the All-Defensive team too,” Lansing said.

2014 All-MVC teams

First team

G Fred Van Vleet    So.    Wichita State

G Ron Baker    So.    Wichita State

F Cleanthony Early    Sr.    Wichita State

G Jake Odum    Sr.    Indiana State

G D.J. Balentine    So.    Evansville

F Seth Tuttle    Jr.    Northern Iowa

Second team

G Anthony Beane    So.    Southern Illinois

G Tekele Cotton    Jr.    Wichita State

F Jarmar Gulley    Sr.    Missouri State

G Desmar Jackson    Sr.    Southern Illinois

G Walt Lemon Jr.    Sr.    Bradley

Honorable mention: Manny Arop, Indiana State; Richard Carter, Drake; Milton Doyle, Loyola; Daishon Knight, Illinois State; Egidijus Mockevicius, Evansville.

Player of the Year: Van Vleet.

Sixth Man Award: Khristian Smith, Indiana State

All-Newcomer Team

F Darius Carter    Jr.    Wichita State

G Milton Doyle    Fr.    Loyola

G Daishon Knight    Jr.    Illinois State

C Reggie Lynch    Fr.    Illinois State

G Wes Washpun    So.    Northern Iowa

Newcomer of the Year: Doyle

All-Freshman Team

G Milton Doyle    Fr.    Loyola

G Jeremy Morgan    Fr.    Northern Iowa

C Reggie Lynch    Fr.    Illinois State

G Austin Ruder    Fr.    Missouri State

F Blake Simmons    Fr.    Evansville

Freshman of the Year: Doyle

All-Defensive Team

G Tekele Cotton    Jr.    Wichita State

G Desmar Jackson    Sr.    Southern Illinois

G Walt Lemon Jr.    Sr.    Bradley

G Fred Van Vleet    So.    Wichita State

C Eg. Mockevicius    So.    Evansville

Defensive MVP: Cotton