Nash, Seniors Hoping To Go Out Winners

Le’Bryan Nash didn’t envision participating in Senior Night activities when he arrived at Oklahoma State in 2011 as a five-star recruit. He was expecting to spend a year or two in Stillwater before entering the NBA Draft as an underclassmen. That’s not the way it happened, but Nash isn’t disappointed that he’ll be participating in Senior Night activities on Wednesday night.

Nash will be one of six Cowboys seniors – joining Michael Cobbins, Anthony Hickey, Christien Sager, Marek Soucek and Alex Budke – recognized prior to OSU’s game against TCU at Gallagher-Iba Arena. The Cowboys, 17-11 overall and 7-9 in the Big 12, are in desperate need of a victory after losing their last four games. The Horned Frogs, 17-12 and 4-12, have lost five in a row in Stillwater with their last win coming in 1925.

The 6-7, 235-pound Nash spent a few minutes reminiscing about his OSU playing career on Tuesday afternoon.

“It’s been very special. I’ve done a lot of things here, and got a lot of wins here. There’s been some great games played here,” said Nash, who is averaging a team-best 16.9 points (second in the Big 12). “It’s going to feel special to play your last game at your college and your university. You want to come out with a big win.

“It’s a game we really need. Senior Day, you always want to leave on a good note, and we need a win. It’s made this game special now. TCU beat us (earlier this year) so we’ve got to come back to work and get a big win.”

Few would have guessed that the former McDonald’s All-American (he won the slam dunk competition over Duke’s Marshall Plumlee) would have stayed at OSU for four years after being recruited by the likes of Kansas, Kentucky, Texas, Syracuse and Arizona as a high school senior at Lincoln High School in Dallas.

He didn’t either.

“With the hype I came in with and all the things that were on my plate, and all I thought I was capable of, I thought I’d only be in college for a short time,” Nash said. “I look back on it now being a senior … being a senior is something special. You’re doing something if you’re a four-year senior.

“I hate that it has to end but it’s been a good run,” he said.

Nash’s name will be in the OSU record books for years to come (see the list below). He will become just the seventh player in school history to average double figures in all four seasons. The others are Ronnie Daniel (1973-77), Olus Holder (1974-78), Matt Clark (1978-83), Byron Houston (1988-92), Adrian Peterson (1995-99) and Ivan McFarlin (2011-05).

He is fifth in school history with 1,764 career points and could pass James Anderson for fourth place in the next few weeks. Also, Nash ranks among the career leaders on the rebounding list (13th), defensive rebounds list (ninth), free throws made (third) and free throws attempted (fourth). In addition, he currently is No. 8 in school history with 83 consecutive starts.

“I think LB will go down as one of the great players to play here when you look at his stats and everything he’s accomplished from his freshman year to his senior year,” OSU head coach Travis Ford said.

“What I like about LB is he’s really progressed from his freshman year to his senior year. I think that makes any coach proud when a guy improves, and I don’t think there’s any question he’s improved a great amount.”

Nash has scored in double figures every game this season (with a season high of 22 points against both Baylor and Southeastern Louisiana, while his lowest scoring output was 11 points against Kansas State). He has scored in double figures in 95 of the 123 games during his OSU playing career.

Entering Wednesday night’s game he is averaging 14.5 points and 5.0 rebounds per game over the course of his career, while shooting 45.8 percent from the field and 75.1 percent from the free-throw line.

Nash wants Cowboys fans to remember him for improving each year he was in Stillwater.

“It was just about getting better every year. I think I got better, listening to Coach Ford and my coaches, listening to my teammates, and just getting better every year. That’s what I wanted to do ever since I got here, getting better at the game of basketball and learning about the game of basketball,” he said.

“I think I did great. I think I did a wonderful job, to be a four-year starter and just get better every year. But I want it to keep going. I want to get to the NCAA Tournament and do something there. The season’s not over, so I’m still thinking about doing something my senior year.”

1. 27 Le'Bryan Nash, Oklahoma State
2. 18 Phil Forte, Oklahoma State
18 Kyan Anderson, TCU
18 Juwan Staten, West Virginia
18 Buddy Hield, Oklahoma
6. 17 Georges Niang, Iowa State
7. 13 Perry Ellis, Kansas
8. 12 Marcus Foster, Kansas State
9. 10 Kenny Chery, Baylor

2,379 Byron Houston (1988-92)
2,367 Bryant Reeves (1991-95)
1,866 Adrian Peterson (1995-99)
4. 1,811 James Anderson (2007-10)
5. 1,764 Le'Bryan Nash (2011-present)
6. 1,702 Desmond Mason (1996-2000)
7. 1,669 Bob Kurland (1942-46)

1. 1,189 Byron Houston (1988-92)
10. 744 Fredrik Jönzén (1998-2002)
11. 722 Marshall Moses (2007-11)
12. 661 Andre Williams (1999-2003)
13. 610 Le'Bryan Nash (2011-present)

1. 790 Byron Houston (1988-92)
5. 480 Fredrik Jönzén (1998-2002)
6. 478 Marshall Moses (2007-11)
7. 476 Markel Brown (2010-14)
8. 469 Obi Muonelo (2006-10)
9. 465 Le'Bryan Nash (2011-present)

1. 698 Byron Houston (1988-92)
2. 618 Bryant Reeves (1991-95)
3. 518 Le'Bryan Nash (2011-present)
4. 488 Byron Eaton (2005-09)
5. 462 Bob Mattick (1951-54)

1. 956 Byron Houston (1988-92)
2. 953 Bryant Reeves (1991-95)
3. 734 Bob Mattick (1951-54)
4. 690 Le'Bryan Nash (2011-present)
5. 649 Byron Eaton (2005-09)

1. 111 Byron Houston (1988-92)
2. 109 Bryant Reeves (1991-95)
3. 98 Adrian Peterson (1995-99)
4. 95 Le’Bryan Nash (2011- present)

1. 104 Desmond Mason (1996-2000)
6. 89 Adrian Peterson (1995-99)
7. 87 Bryant Reeves (1991-95)
8. 83 Le’Bryan Nash (2011-present)

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