ST.LOUIS, Mo. — Arkansas freshman Bobby Portis’ busy day continued on Tuesday as he followed his pair of SEC postseason honors with a spot on the U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) All-District VII team, based on voting from its national membership of 900-plus. Portis was the lone freshman on the All-District VII squad, extending Arkansas’ streak to 11 straight years with a player honored by the USBWA. Portis and Kentucky’s Julius Randle were the only two freshmen from the SEC to make any of the nine All-District teams.
Just a few hours prior, Portis was named to the All-SEC second team and the SEC All-Freshman team. Portis is just the sixth freshman in program history to earn All-SEC honors. During his standout rookie campaign, Portis also collected three SEC Player of the Week accolades, which equaled the record previously set by current Houston Rocket Patrick Beverley in 2007. One of Portis’ weekly honors came on the heels of breaking the Arkansas freshman scoring record with 35 points against Alabama on Feb. 5 at Bud Walton Arena, dethroning current Director of Student-Athlete Development Scotty Thurman. The 35-point night was the most by a Razorback since 2002, and the third-most points scored by an SEC player this season. Portis accounted for 29 of the team’s first 35 points, while also adding nine rebounds and a season-best six blocks. Portis enters the SEC Tournament averaging 12.4 points and 6.6 rebounds, ranking second and first on the team, respectively. The 6-foot-10 forward has reached double figures in 20 games with a team-best three doubles and is the only Razorback to start all 31 games. Portis ranks 10th in the SEC in rebounding and tied for fifth in blocks (1.6), while also showcasing his all-round skill with 46 assists and 35 steals. The first Arkansas signee since 2004, and the 13th overall, to play in the McDonald’s All-American game, Portis has lived up to the hype and has a chance to become the first freshman in program history to lead the team in scoring and rebounding in the same season. Portis also needs just 12 rebounds to break the freshman record of 211 set by Marshawn Powell in 2010. Portis was joined on the USBWA All-District VII team by Jaye Crockett (Texas Tech), Jonathan Holmes (Texas), Cory Jefferson (Baylor), Shawn Long (Louisiana-Lafayette), Aaric Murray (Texas Southern), Nic Moore (SMU), Johnny O’Bryant (LSU), Jacob Parker (Stephen F. Austin) and Cameron Ridley (Texas). Fifth-seeded Arkansas (21-10) will begin play at the SEC Tournament on Thursday, taking on the winner of Auburn/South Carolina in a 2:30 p.m. CT game on SEC TV. The Razorbacks earned a first round bye and head to Atlanta with wins in eight of their last 10 games.