Men’s Basketball News

Diego Maffia of the Victoria Vikes has been named the winner of the Mike Moser Memorial Trophy as the most valuable player in U SPORTS men’s basketball. The announcement was made on Thursday night at the All-Canadian Award Ceremony in Quebec City, site of the 2024 championship tournament.

Other major award winners include Xavier Spencer of Carleton, who won the Dr. Peter Mullins Trophy as rookie of the year; Alexander Dewar of Saskatchewan, who took home the Ken Shields award (student-athlete community service); Luka Syllas of Queen’s, who was named the defensive player of the year; and Craig Beaucamp of Victoria, who won the Stuart W. Aberdeen Memorial Award as the Fox40 Coach of the Year.

The 2024 U SPORTS Men’s Final 8 gets underway on Friday at the PEPS-Amphithéatre Desjardins on the Laval University campus. Play continues through to the gold medal game, which is set for 6 p.m. on Sunday.

View the official championship website.

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Mike Moser Memorial Trophy (most valuable player) – Diego Maffia, Victoria

Diego Maffia has been named the U SPORTS player of the year, after being a nominee for the award last year.

Playing in 17 games for the Vikes this season and starting all of them, Maffia led all players in Canada West and U SPORTS with a 26.7 points per game average during the 2023-24 regular season. Not only leading the Vikes in points, Maffia was also a huge influence on the Vikes’ point-scoring in general, leading the team with a 5.2 assist per game average, which ranked fourth in the conference.

Maffia is the third Vike to win national player of the year honours, following the late Eli Pasquale in 1984 and Eric Hinrichsen, who took the award in 1997 and 1999.

Other nominees: Callum Baker (Toronto), Kevin Civil (UQAM), Malcolm Christie (Dalhousie).

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Dr. Peter Mullins Trophy (rookie of the year) – Xavier Spencer, Carleton

Xavier Spencer of Carleton took home the Dr. Peter Mullins Trophy after leading all U SPORTS rookies in points, field goals, free throws, and assists.

Storming onto the scene for the Ravens in 2023-24, Spencer led the Ravens in minutes played, field goals and points while starting all 22 regular season games. The six-foot-one  guard showed why at age 19 he has already appeared internationally for Antigua and Barbuda, for whom he was capped  at last summer’s FIBA AmericaCup Qualifiers.

Averaging 27.0 minutes per game, Xavier's 72 assists eclipsed the previous rookie record set by Philib Scrubb in 2010-11. Spencer’s his 31 steals also established a new rookie high watermark for the Ravens. 

Other nominees: Koat Thomas (St. F-X), Willem Mwanza (Laval), Easton Thimm (Saskatchewan).

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Defensive player of the year – Luka Syllas, Queen’s

Luka Syllas of Queen’s helped lead the Gaels to the OUA championship, as they set a program record with 19 regular-season wins, and finished as the second-ranked defensive unit in U SPORTS.  Syllas led Queen's in steals with 47 on the season, which ranked fifth in U SPORTS, while also chipping in four defensive rebounds per game. Syllas is the Gaels' point person defensively and has been effective at disrupting many of the top players in the OUA. Syllas has displayed great versatility all season long through athleticism, strength, and toughness.

Other nominees: Javordo Mitchell (UNB), Mcfadden Jean (UQAM), Aaron Tesfagiorgis (Victoria).

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Ken Shields Award (student-athlete community service) – Alexander Dewar, Saskatchewan

Dewar has made his impact felt on the court throughout his university career, placing in the top 10 in Canada West scoring three times and currently sitting third in all-time career points in Huskies program history. However, it's his commitment to volunteering and giving back that will leave the most lasting impact on the Saskatoon community.

Throughout his time at U of S, Dewar has been a dedicated member of the Huskie Athletics Council, where he focuses on community engagement and volunteerism. He has volunteered for the Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Radiothon Day, Huskie Homeroom, Salvation Army Christmas Hamper, and the Immigration Partnership Saskatoon, among other initiatives.

He has also worked full-time as a support worker for individuals with intellectual disabilities and has volunteered at the White Buffalo Youth Basketball Tournament, the Saskatchewan Marathon, and the Learn to Ride Safe program. In addition, he coaches high school basketball and the SMBA Developmental League, where he has a chance to be a mentor and teach valuable life lessons to young athletes.

Other nominees: Mitchell Mersereau (Cape Breton), Haris Elezovic (Laval), Taijon Graham (Nipissing).

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Stuart W. Aberdeen Memorial Award (Fox 40 Coach of the Year) – Craig Beaucamp, Victoria

Craig Beaucamp has earned the 2023-24 Coach of the Year award after leading his Vikes squad to the best record in the conference (17-3) and the program’s third-straight 17-win Canada West season. Claiming the top seed for the Canada West playoff tournament, Beaucamp has put his team in prime position to win for their third straight Canada West title, which they did two weekends ago.

Consistently ranked as the No. 1 or No. 2 team in U SPORTS throughout the season, Victoria ranked first in both U SPORTS and Canada West with a 92.0 points per game scoring average. Also a top-10 team on defence, the Vikes ranked fourth in Canada West and 10th in U SPORTS with a 73.3 points allowed per game mark.

Beaucamp collects the national award for the first time in his career. He is the second UVic coach to win the national honour, following the legendary Ken Sheilds, who won the award with Victoria in 1979, 1982 and 1983. 

Other nominees: Jonah Taussig (Saint Marys), Rastko Popovic (Concordia), Steph Barrie (Queen’s).


Mike Moser Memorial Trophy (player of the year): Diego Maffia, Victoria

Dr. Peter Mullins Trophy (rookie of the year): Xavier Spencer, Carleton

Ken Shields Award (student-athlete community service): Alexander Dewar, Saskatchewan

Defensive Player of the Year: Luka Syllas, Queen’s

Stuart W. Aberdeen Award (Fox40 Coach of the Year): Craig Beaucamp, Victoria

First Team All-Canadians

Athlete                                      University                     Pos       Year        Hometown                              Academic Program

Malcolm Christie                   Dalhousie                      G           3               Fredericton, N.B.                   Commerce

Callum Baker                          Toronto                          G           4               Oakville, Ont.                          Arts & Science

Luka Syllas                               Queen’s                          G           5               Kingston, Ont.                         Concurrent Education

Diego Maffia                           Victoria                           G           4               Victoria, B.C.                            Humanities

Nate Petrone                          Calgary                            G           3               Calgary, Alta.                           Kinesiology

Second Team All-Canadians

Athlete                                      University                     Pos       Year        Hometown                              Academic Program

Dondre Reddick                     STFX                                 G           4               Antigonish, N.S.                      Arts

Kevin Civil                                 UQAM                             G           5               Montreal, Que.                      Management (Gr. dip.)

Taye Donald                            Laurier                            G           3               St. Thomas, Ont.                    Core Science

Brock Newton                        Ottawa                            F            4               Fergus, Ont. Finance

Brian Wallack                          UBC                                  F            5               Surrey, B.C.                              Kinesiology (M)

All-Rookie Team

Athlete                                      University                     Pos                         Hometown                              Academic Program

Koat Thomas                           STFX                                 G                             Waterloo, Ont.                       Arts

Willem Mwanza                    Laval                                G                             Kasenyi, DRC                           Business (Cert.)

Xavier Spencer                       Carleton                         G                             Calgary, Alta.                           Sociology

Augustus Bradzeikis             Carleton                         F                              Oakville, Ont.                          Criminology

Easton Thimm                        Saskatchewan              F                              Saskatoon, Sask.                    Business