January 14, 2011

Matt Howard Earns Horizon League Academic Honor

INDIANAPOLIS, IND. -- Butler senior Matt Howard, who matched his lofty standing in the classroom with a high-powered performance on the basketball court, has been named Horizon League Male Scholar-Athlete of the Month for December.

Howard helped the Bulldogs to a 6-2 record in December, including a championship at the Diamond Head Classic in Hawaii.  The 6-8 forward from Connersville was named the Most Valuable Player at the eight-team event in Honolulu, after finishing as the tournament’s third-leading rebounder and fourth-leading scorer, and he was tabbed as Horizon League Player of the Week, after leading the Bulldogs past Stanford with 27 points and 10 rebounds.  He finished the month as the second-leading scorer and rebounder in the league.

Butler’s scoring and rebounding leader averaged 19.3 points and 7.0 rebounds in the Bulldogs’ eight December games.  His performance helped him climb into the “Top 10” on Butler’s all-time scoring and rebounding lists.

A finance major, Howard boasts a 3.77 cumulative grade point average, including a 4.00 GPA for the fall semester.  He’s a two-time Academic All-American and a two-time ESPN The Magazine/CoSIDA Academic All-District V pick.  He earned the NCAA’s “Elite 88” Award, given to the participating athlete with the highest GPA, at last spring’s Final Four.

The Horizon League instituted the Scholar-Athlete of the Month award as a way to recognize outstanding academic and athletic achievement by its student-athletes.  To be eligible for the honor, a student-athlete must maintain a cumulative grade-point average of 3.20 or better (on a 4.00 scale), have completed at least one year at the member institution, passed 24 semester or 36 quarter hours and perform well during the month’s competition.  Winners are selected by the league’s faculty athletics representatives from nominations provided by sports information directors.