« Men’s Basketball 2015-16

Craig Bradshaw

School

Belmont

Position
Guard
Major
Public Relations

Classroom

Craig Bradshaw is the latest in a long line of Belmont men’s basketball players to achieve at the highest level on the court and in the classroom. The Ridgetop, Tenn., native was named a 2015 Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-American, the 12th Bruin to receive the honor since 2001. Moreover, Bradshaw was named the 2015 National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) DI-AAA ADA Men’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year—the most prestigious academic honor awarded to student-athletes from non-football-playing institutions. Bradshaw also was named to the 2015 National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Honors Court and is a three-time Ohio Valley Conference Commissioner’s Honor Roll recipient. The 6-3 guard has garnered Belmont University Dean’s List distinction three times and holds a grade-point average of 3.47 in his chosen major of public relations.

Character

Bradshaw has demonstrated tremendous resiliency and fortitude in overcoming injuries during each of his first three collegiate seasons. Described by Belmont Head Coach Rick Byrd as “the most fearless player I’ve ever coached,” Bradshaw’s character was plainly evident last season. Known for his passionate, all-out playing style in practice and games, the rising senior led Belmont to seven consecutive victories down the stretch last season, including a victory over nationally-ranked Murray State in the 2015 OVC Championship game. One of the most expressive players in college basketball, Bradshaw’s charismatic yet respectful style is a main reason why Belmont has received the OVC Team Sportsmanship Award three consecutive years.

Community

Service is at the heart of the Belmont Basketball program, and Bradshaw has embraced his role in that capacity. Bradshaw has taken part in two mission trips, one to South Dakota through the Belmont Sports Evangelism ministry, and a second to the Dominican Republic through Score International. Bradshaw uses his basketball gifts as a way to connect with locals and share the gospel message. The senior also joins his Bruin teammates on regular service projects to the Nashville Rescue Mission and to participate in an outreach program at a Nashville area elementary school promoting literacy and physical fitness.

Competition

One of the top returning players in college basketball in 2015-16, Bradshaw’s name was part of many Preseason All-America conversations. Having led Belmont to two NCAA Tournament appearances—including a near-miss victory against ACC Champion Virginia last season—and one Postseason NIT quarterfinal appearance, Bradshaw entered this season as the leading returning scorer in the Ohio Valley Conference. Named 2015 Tennessee Sports Writers Association (TSWA) Men’s Basketball Player of the Year and 2015 Mid-Major All-American, Bradshaw has received All-OVC honors each of the last two seasons. Among NCAA leaders in scoring and three-point field goal percentage a year ago, Bradshaw has 58 double-figure scoring games to his credit. His career-high 42-point performance at Ohio last November established a new Belmont single-game scoring standard and ranked among the high scoring games in 2014-15. The performance yielded National Player of the Week honors from several national online publications (ESPN, CBS, NBC). As a sophomore, Bradshaw was named Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Tipoff Tournament Most Valuable Player as Belmont defeated six-time National Champion North Carolina. Bradshaw has led Belmont to 74 victories over his first three seasons.