MINNEAPOLIS — Augsburg University men’s basketball guard Booker Coplin (JR, Shakopee, Minn./Shakopee HS) added to his haul of awards for his remarkable 2018-19 season on Wednesday, as he was named as the Division III West District Player of the Year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches, was named as a first-team honoree to the NABC’s Division III Coaches’ All-West District Team, and was named to the Google Cloud Academic All-America Division III Men’s Basketball Team as a second-team honoree.
It’s the sixth time an Augsburg player has earned NABC All-West District honors in the program’s NCAA Division III history (since 1985) — Devean George ’99 was a first-team honoree in both 1997-88 and 1998-99, Dan Kornbaum ’14 was a first-team honoree in 2013-14 and a second-team honoree in 2012-13, and Collin Olmscheid ’19 was a first-team honoree last season. A total of 11 players were selected to the 2018-19 NABC Division III Coaches’ All-West District Team — six to the first team and five to the second team.
A biopsychology major with a 3.733 grade-point average, Coplin is the first Augsburg men’s basketball player to ever earn Google Cloud Academic All-America honors. The award is presented by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). A total of 15 men’s basketball players from NCAA Division III schools nationwide were named to the Academic All-America squad in three teams of five players each. Coplin was named to the Google Cloud Academic All-District squad by CoSIDA in February.
Across all sports, Augsburg student-athletes have now been honored 43 times with CoSIDA Academic All-America honors since 1981, including 33 honors since 2000. Among the 13 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference schools, Augsburg has had the fourth-most CoSIDA Academic All-Americans all-time.
Coplin had one of the best individual seasons in Augsburg men’s basketball history, as he was named the MIAC’s Player of the Year — the seventh time an Auggie has received the men’s basketball conference honor — and was named to the All-MIAC first team, after receiving All-MIAC second-team honors last year. He earned MIAC Athlete of the Week honors four times this season, and was named to the D3hoops.com national Team of the Week three times. Earlier this week, he was named to the D3hoops.com All-West Region team as a first-team honoree.
This season, he was the leader of an Augsburg men’s basketball squad that reached the MIAC playoff title game for the second season in a row — both times advancing to the final from the No. 4 seed. Augsburg finished 19-9 overall, 13-7 in MIAC play, reaching the conference playoffs for the fourth straight season and ninth time in the last 11 years.
The MIAC’s scoring champion in 2018-19, Coplin set Augsburg single-season school records for both points (784) and points per-game (28.0), breaking the old marks of 770 points and 27.5 points per-game, set by George in the 1998-99 season. Coplin’s scoring and rebounding averages of 28.0 points and 9.4 rebounds per-game are the best combined totals for an Auggie since George’s 27.5 points and 11.3 rebounds per-game averages in 1998-99. He also set a new single-season record for three-pointers with 76, breaking the old mark of 75 set by Scott Syring ’93 in the 1989-90 season.
He also put new marks in the school record-book in eight other top-10 single-season (since 1970) categories — second in rebounds (264) and free-throw percentage (.897), third in steals (61), fourth in field goals (276), field-goal attempts (530) and free throws (156), fifth in rebounds per-game (9.4), and seventh in free-throw attempts (174). His 93 assists are 16th-most in a single season in program history.
He led the conference in both overall scoring (28.0 points per-game) and rebounding (9.4 per-game). His 61 steals led the MIAC in overall statistics, as did his 276 field goals, 156 free throws and 264 total rebounds. He finished second among MIAC players in three-pointers (76), fifth in assists (93) and sixth in blocked shots (27), playing in a league-high 36.1 minutes per-game. Among NCAA Division III players nationally (as of March 9), Coplin currently ranks second in both total points and points per-game, also ranking second in field goals made and third in field-goal attempts.
This season, Coplin scored in double figures in all 28 games, collecting 12 point-rebound double-doubles. He scored 20-plus points in 24 games and 30-plus points in 11 contests, including his last four games of the season where he scored 43, 33, 32 and a career-high 46 points. He also contributed one of the most dramatic shots in Augsburg history — a game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer to give Augsburg a 67-64 first-round playoff win over St. Olaf on Feb. 19.
A transfer who played his first season at Wisconsin-River Falls, Coplin has shined in his two Auggie seasons, now standing 13th in school history with 1,167 points in an Auggie uniform (57 games, 55 starts). His 20.5 Augsburg points per-game career average is currently fourth-best in school history. His .884 free-throw percentage at Augsburg is currently tops in program history, while his 7.9 rebounds per-game average is 11th-best and his 117 three-pointers are 14th-most. He has 448 rebounds, 181 assists, 115 steals and 37 blocked shots as an Auggie. Including his first year at UW-River Falls (85 games, 65 starts), Coplin now has scored 1,251 career points (14.7 per-game), with 505 rebounds (5.9 per-game), 131 three-pointers, 212 assists, 136 steals and 42 blocked shots.
The Google Cloud Academic All-America program is administered by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Top student-athletes, who have already earned Google Cloud Academic All-District first-team honors, are eligible for inclusion on the Google Cloud Academic All-America team. Student-athletes must have reached sophomore athletic and academic standing at their current institutions, have a grade-point average above 3.30 (4.0 scale) and have outstanding athletic credentials. The Google Cloud Academic All-America ballot is voted on by a committee of CoSIDA members, along with sports information directors in the various divisions. Since the program’s inception in 1952, CoSIDA has bestowed Google Cloud Academic All-America honors on more than 20,000 student-athletes in NCAA Divisions I, II, III and NAIA, covering all NCAA championship sports.
Google Cloud, a cloud computing services program for businesses, recently signed on as the title sponsor for CoSIDA’s Academic All-District/Academic All-America programs. The Division III Google Cloud Academic All-America program is being financially supported by the NCAA Division III national governance structure, to assist CoSIDA with handling the awards fulfillment aspects for the Google Cloud Division III Academic All-America teams program.
This is the eighth year of the expanded Google Cloud Academic All-America program, with separate teams comprising NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II and NCAA Division III participants, along with a College Division team of NAIA, Canadian and two-year schools. First-team Google Cloud Academic All-District members advance to the Google Cloud Academic All-America ballot, voted on by a committee of CoSIDA members.
Augsburg College’s All-Time CoSIDA Academic All-Americans:
Booker Coplin, men’s basketball, 2019 (second team)
Christopher Lemke, football, 2018 (first team)
Ashley St. Aubin, women’s soccer, 2018 (second team)
Nate Flynn, men’s ice hockey (men’s at-large), 2018 (first team)
Victor Gliva, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2018 (first team)
Sam Bennyhoff, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2018 (second team)
Christopher Lemke, football, 2017 (first team)
Nate Flynn, men’s ice hockey (men’s at-large), 2017 (second team)
Mary Cornelius, women’s track and field/cross country, 2016 (third team)
Erika Allen, women’s ice hockey (women’s at-large), 2016 (second team)
Zach Swingen, football, 2015 (first team)
Chris DeVet, football, 2014 (first team)
Zach Swingen, football, 2014 (second team)
Lauren Rice, women’s track and field/cross country, 2014 (first team)
Elianna Bier, women’s swimming and diving (women’s at-large), 2014 (second team)
Chad Thompson, football, 2013 (second team)
Chris DeVet, football, 2013 (second team)
Bri Dorale, softball, 2013 (first team)
Chad Thompson, football, 2012 (first team)
Tony Valek, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2012 (first team)
Tony Valek, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2011 (first team)
Alex Hildebrandt, men’s soccer, 2009 (second team)
Alex Hildebrandt, men’s soccer, 2008 (third team)
Nick Manders, men’s soccer, 2007 (second team)
Andrew Neumann, football, 2006 (second team)
Ryan Valek, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2006 (first team)
Riley Conway, men’s track and field/cross country, 2005 (second team)
Mark Matzek, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2005 (first team)
Ryan Valek, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2005 (third team)
Darren Ginther, baseball, 2005 (first team)
Brent Peroutka, football, 2001 (second team)
Josh Cagle, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2000 (first team)
Brian Jones, wrestling (men’s at-large), 2000 (second team)
Josh Cagle, wrestling (men’s at-large), 1999 (second team)
Jim Peterson, wrestling (men’s at-large), 1999 (second team)
Scott Hvistendahl, football, 1998 (second team)
Ted Schultz, football, 1997 (first team)
Scott Hvistendahl, football, 1997 (second team)
Dan Lewandowski, wrestling (men’s at-large), 1997 (second team)
Andrea Haight, softball, 1991 (second team)
Karen Sterner, track and field (women’s at-large), 1987 (second team)
Karen Sterner, track and field (women’s at-large), 1986 (first team)
Paul Elliot, football, 1981 (only one team selected)
(NOTE: Story includes information taken from Augsburg’s D3hoops.com All-West Region release.)