Ellis Named a Senior CLASS Award Candidate
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Kansas forward Perry Ellis has been named one of 30 candidates for the 2015-16 Senior CLASS Award®. 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.
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.
Each of the 30 candidate classes will be narrowed to 10 finalists in February, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans.
Ellis is a sport management major and business minor. The 2014-15 Big 12 Men’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year started his college career with Academic All-Big 12 Rookie Team honors in 2013. Ellis has graced the Athletic Director’s and Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll six times and has continued his academic success by being named as an Academic All-Big 12 selection in both his sophomore and junior seasons. The 2015 All-America Honorable Mention honoree’s work in the classroom is no surprise as he was valedictorian at Wichita Heights High School where he carried a 4.0 grade point average.
The 2015 Danny Manning “Mr. Jayhawk” Award recipient and All-Big 12 First Team performer exudes all the qualities and characteristics expected of leader. Ellis was selected as an Honorary Hero by the Real Men Real Heroes Organization for his extraordinary contributions to the community. He has spent countless hours visiting local schools and youth centers, such as the Boys and Girls Club, to mentor and offer encouragement to young kids. He spends time volunteering at the Wichita Children’s Home, where both of his parents work. The three-time NABC Good Works Team nominee also devotes one-on-one time with Special Olympics basketball player Tony Parker and is a regular visitor of cancer patients at Via Christi Saint Francis Hospital in Wichita.
Additionally, Ellis contributes to the community as a member of the Kansas men’s basketball team. Each year the Jayhawks host the Wilt Chamberlain Special Olympics Clinic during the heart of conference play. The team also gives approximately 450 women a taste of being a Jayhawk at the annual “Ladies Night Out” event in Allen Fieldhouse, an occasion that creates awareness for breast cancer and benefits Jayhawks for a Cure, the Lawrence Memorial Hospital (LMH) and the KU Cancer Center. Every year, the KU team participates in a holiday shopping trip to Walmart in order to provide items from a wish list for area families through the Salvation Army. Finally, Ellis and his teammates sign more than 1,500 basketballs annually with proceeds going to local charities.
Ellis will go down as one of the most decorated players in Kansas men’s basketball history. He is on pace to become only the eighth player in KU lore to rank in the top 15 in both the career scoring and rebounding joining the likes of Manning, Lovellete, LaFrentz, Collison, Robisch, Randall and Simien. One of five finalists for the 2015 Karl Malone Power Forward Award, Ellis is a two-time Academic All-Big 12 selection who was an All-Big 12 First Team honoree as a junior and third-team all-league selection as a sophomore. Last season Ellis was a three-time Big 12 Player of the Week choice and has earned the accolade four times in his career. In Nov. 2014, Ellis was named the CBSSports.com National Player of the Week after being named the Orlando Classic Most Valuable Player. Additionally, Ellis was an NABC Division I All-District 8 First Team selection and a Lute Olson All-America Team honoree his junior season.
In the summer of 2015 Ellis started all eight games for team USA at the 2015 World University Games in winning the gold medal. Following the competition he was named to the World University Games second team.
As a freshman Ellis was named to the 2013 Big 12 All-Tournament Team in leading Kansas to the tourney title. As a sophomore in 2013-14, he was named to the all-tournament team at the Battle 4 Atlantis in addition to later being named All-Big 12 Third Team. This season he earned all-tournament team honors in KU’s title run at the Maui Jim Maui Invitational.
For more information on each of the candidates, visit SeniorCLASSaward.com.
Senior CLASS Award Candidates:
Ryan Arcidiacono, Villanova
Craig Bradshaw, Belmont
Malcolm Brogdon, Virginia
John Brown, High Point
Kyle Collinsworth, BYU
Rapheal Davis, Purdue
Perry Ellis, KANSAS
Obi Emegano, Oral Roberts
Phil Forte, Oklahoma State
Chris Fowler, Central Michigan
Mike Gesell, Iowa
Shaq Goodwin, Memphis
Buddy Hield, Oklahoma
Peter Hooley, Albany
Amile Jefferson, Duke
Cedric Kuakumensah, Brown
Egidijus Mockevicius, Evansville
Nic Moore, SMU
Georges Niang, Iowa State
Ethan O’Day, Vermont
Marcus Paige, North Carolina
Alex Poythress, Kentucky
James Robinson, Pittsburgh
Justin Sears, Yale
Shavon Shields, Nebraska
Denzel Valentine, Michigan State
Fred VanVleet, Wichita State
Thoams Walkup, Stephen F. Austin
Jameel Warney, Stony Brook
Kyle Wiltjer, Gonzaga
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