CALDWELL -- College of Idaho men's basketball senior Aziz Leeks received one of the rarest honors in the 30-year history of the Cascade Collegiate Conference, on Wednesday.
Leeks became just the second player in league history - and the first since 2006 - to be named the CCC Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year in the same season.
"It feels great. As players, we have individual goals and accolades we want to achieve," Leeks told KTVB following the announcement. "These were some of my goals. To see them come to fruition makes me feel good."
"It should reward guys that make their team win," said head coach Scott Garson, "and nobody has done a better job of making their team win in our conference than Aziz Leeks."
As the Yotes get set to enter the NAIA National Tournament, Leeks leads the College of Idaho is rebounding (9.7 per game) and blocked shots (36 total). He was a key component of a Yotes’ defense that allowed just 65.2 points per game this season, the fewest in the conference.
"I pride myself in defense. I like to make it difficult for players to score," said Leeks.
"He's a big part of this team. He's the anchor of our defense," added fellow senior Roosevelt Adams.
In addition to his elite effort on defense, Leeks is also shooting 55.8-percent from the floor and ranks second on the team in scoring (12.7 points per game).
"Aziz stands out with his ability to defend, his ability to rebound, his ability to give us a scoring post presence," Garson said. "[We went] 21-2 in conference play, you've got to think that your best player is the Player of the Year in the conference.
"I'm really happy that coaches recognized his efforts on both ends of floor," continued Garson, "because he's been spectacular this year."
After winning both the CCC regular season and tournament titles, Leeks and the Yotes will now set their sights on the NAIA National Tournament. The College of Idaho will tipoff against Mayville (N.D.) on Thursday, March 8 at 3:00 p.m. MT.
ADAMS, PINCKNEY AND BRUNEEL RECEIVE HONORS
Yotes senior guard Roosevelt Adams landed on the All-CCC Team along with Leeks. Adams averaged a team-high 13.3 points per game and shot 45.0-percent from three this season.
Sophomores Talon Pinckey (12.1 PPG, 5.6 APG) and Nate Bruneel (11.4 PPG, 4.4 RPG) both received honorable mention honors.