Shabazz Napier has been a solid performer in the classroom since his arrival at UConn as a freshman. Not only is he on track to graduate this spring, but he has been named to the school’s Dean’s List, signifying he is among the top 25 percent academically, and also was on the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll as well as earning a “Husky High Five,” for academic achievement.
Shabazz Napier has shown his high character and leadership abilities on numerous occasions, but never more so than when he decided to remain at UConn for his junior season even though the team was ineligible for postseason play. He had the chance to transfer and did not. He is a two-time team captain and came back on an injured foot in last season’s final game to lead the team to a win. Led the lead to a 20-win season despite the lack of a postseason goal.
Napier makes sure the team members send the correct message to the community with speeches to young people. He is in the forefront of the Husky Food Drive, helping needy families at holiday time and has volunteered his time for clinics at American School for the Deaf. He was one of the most popular players at UConn’s clinic in Newtown last year following the tragedy at Sandy Hook.
Napier quite simply is the heart and soul of the Huskies. He was a First Team All-Big East pick last year after leading the Huskies in scoring, assists, steals, and 3-point percentage. He was the USBWA District I Player of the Year and was named to the NABC District 5 First Team. He was the only Big East Conference player to average at least 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists per game. He scored 55 points in 45 overtime minutes to lead UConn to five overtime wins, a school record.