ROCK HILL — Throughout his time at Newberry senior James Stepp has made a tremendous impact on and off the court. Stepp has been named the South Atlantic Conference 2017-18 Men’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete, becoming the third Newberry men’s basketball player and 18th student-athlete across all sports in school history to earn the SAC Scholar-Athlete honor.
The accolade is based off of a student-athlete’s academic, athletic and community service achievements and is voted on by faculty athletic representatives from all 12 SAC institutions. Newberry has won the award three times over the past four seasons.
Over his four-year career, the Greensboro, N.C. native played in 117 games and has accumulated 1,328 points, placing him in the 18th spot on the Newberry all-time scoring list. He broke the 1,000-point plateau against Bowie State on Nov. 26 with a 12-point effort and averaged 14.7 points per game this season. Stepp was efficient from beyond the arc during his career racking up 287 three-pointers to break a school record. To round out his senior season Stepp garnered a SAC Player of the Week accolade for his efforts against Carson-Newman and Warren Wilson.
Head Coach Dave Davis is proud of his achievements.
“James Stepp has been the consummate student athlete in his entire time here. What an incredible honor for him and he truly deserves this award,” he said
Stepp is slated to graduate this spring with a bachelor’s degree in Biology and was a member of the Dean’s List every semester of his career. He sported a 3.76 cumulative GPA in the spring semester. His academic accomplishments include being named to COSIDA Academic All-District the past two years and a NABC Honors Court nod.
In addition to his athletic and academic achievements, Stepp has also made a significant impact off the court. He has volunteered with both the Special Olympics and Relay for Life, assisted residents in a local nursing home, and made weekly visits to Gallman Elementary School to mentor students.