UT Arlington junior forward Kevin Hervey was named the Sun Belt Player of the Year, and UTA’s Scott Cross was selected as Joe Gottfried Coach of the Year in a ballot of Sun Belt Conference coaches, it was announced Monday.
Hervey also earned first team all-conference honors. UTA junior guard Erick Neal was named to the second team after leading the Sun Belt in assists and ranking among the top 10 nationally while averaging 103 points a game.
Hervey, Neal and Cross are all Metroplex high school products: Hervey from Arlington Bowie, Neal from Dallas Lincoln and Cross from Garland.
Hervey came back from last season’s knee injury to average 17.3 points and 8.4 rebounds a game. He ended the regular-season Saturday by scoring a career-high 34 points in a loss at Louisiana-Lafayette.
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Cross, in his 11th season, played at UTA in 1996-98 and served as an assistant upon graduation. His association with the Mavericks spans 22 seasons.
This season UTA (24-7, 14-4 Sun Belt) won its first Sun Belt title and the third regular-season conference championship in program history.
The Mavericks enter this week’s Sun Belt Championships as the tournament’s top seed and received a first-round bye. UTA will face the winner of No. 8 Coastal Carolina and No. 9 South Alabama in Friday’s 11:30 a.m. quarterfinal.