Brentwood, TN – For just the third time in league history, a pair of teammates have been named Ohio Valley Conference Player and Freshman of the Year, with Terry Taylor and Jordyn Adams earning two of the league’s top honors.
That was announced Tuesday afternoon, ahead of the start of the OVC Men’s Basketball Championship in Evansville; the duo also were named to the 10-man All-OVC first-team.
Adams is the second Gov in three years to take Freshman of the Year honors, joining Taylor in 2017-18. Taylor, meanwhile, is the first Gov to be named the league’s top player since Drake Reed in 2006-07.
The league preseason Player of the Year, Taylor had a tall task improving upon his first two All-OVC campaigns. Yet somehow, the Bowling Green native pulled it off, tying the league record with eight OVC Player of the Week honors in his junior campaign. And the numbers… well, the numbers are pretty incredible.
The basics: Taylor enters the OVC Tournament averaging 21.4 points on 55.1 percent shooting, pulling down 10.8 rebounds per night with 1.4 blocks and 1.3 steals. He’s among the nation’s top-10 in rebounding (10th), double-doubles (16, ninth) and offensive rebounding (4.03, ninth). Incredible numbers in any context.
Now dig deeper. Terry Taylor is one of four players in Division I currently averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds per game. He’s the only player in the nation leading his league in both scoring and rebounding, the only player among the nation’s top-15 in scoring and rebounding and he’s the only player in the OVC averaging more than one block and one steal per night.
He’s putting together quite the career. This year, he became the only player in school history to start his career with three straight 500-point seasons. He’s one of six active Division I players with 1,800 career points and 900 career rebounds, a trajectory that would make him just the fifth OVC player with 2,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds early in his senior season. Among active Division I players, Taylor leads the way in total rebounds, rebounds per game, total field goals and double-doubles—all categories he also leads active OVC players in.
A book could be filled simply of the single-game escapades Taylor got up to as a junior.
A quick sampling includes:
- 37 points on 15-of-21 shooting to go with 16 rebounds and a pair of blocks against Southeastern Louisiana.
- A season-high 39 points on 14-of-20 shooting and 9-of-10 at the line against McKendree.
- With injuries putting the Govs at a disadvantage, he poured in 30 points and added seven boards at the St. Pete Shootout against Alabama State.
- 32 points on another 70-percent night from the field against UT Martin, with a dozen rebounds.
- 37 points, 14 rebounds and a Dunn Center record-tying six threes without a miss against Tennessee State.
- First career 20-20 and just the ninth in the OVC over the last decade with 26 points and 23 rebounds at Belmont.
- Played every minute of an overtime thriller at Eastern Illinois, finishing with 26 points and 16 boards.
Taylor’s third first-team All-OVC honor puts him in rare company among Austin Peay greats; he’s the fifth player in program history to earn three first-team accolades, joining Howard Wright, Otis Howard, Bubba Wells, Trenton Hassell and Drake Reed. All APSU Athletic Hall of Famers.
Adams is writing his own burgeoning legend as a freshman. His 10 OVC Freshman of the Week honors surpassed Chris Horton’s Austin Peay State University record and left him just one shy of the league record.
At 17.8 points per game, Jordyn Adams isn’t just the highest-scoring freshman in the league; he’s second in the nation among freshmen, behind only Georgia’s Anthony Edwards—a likely lottery pick who Adams outscored 15 points to nine in a December 30th duel in Athens.
Adams is fifth in the league in scoring at 17.8 points per night; he also ranks fifth in free-throw percentage (79.1), eighth in threes made (1.9), 13th in three-point percentage (37.7). Among Division I freshmen, in addition to his scoring, he ranks second field goal attempts (431), second in total points (551), fourth in free-throws made (125), sixth in field goals made (184), eighth in free-throw attempts (158) and eighth in minutes per game (33:17).
In the annals of Austin Peay State University freshmen, Adams stands among the greats. He just passed Taylor for second all-time among Governor freshmen in scoring and is one of three freshmen to post 500 points or more in his first year in Clarksville. His 58 three-pointers also rank first among APSU freshmen.
Adams has had more than his share of outstanding performances in his first season, including:
- 25 points in just his fourth collegiate game at Vanderbilt—the first Gov to score 25 against a high-major program since at least the turn of the century.
- A 23-point effort against Duquesne at the St. Pete Shootout, followed by his first career 30-point effort the next day against Alabama State when the Govs were beset by injury.
- 22 points and six rebounds in his league debut against Southeast Missouri.
- 31 points, including seven three-pointers, at UT Martin.
- A 37-point outburst against Tennessee State that remains tied for the Division I single-game high by a freshman in 2019-20.
- 24 points and a season-high six assists to help the Govs take down eventual regular-season champion Belmont.
- Hit five threes, all in the second half, and a dozen free-throws en route to 31 points at Eastern Illinois.
Adams is the sixth first-year player in Austin Peay history to earn OVC Freshman of the Year honors, joining Taylor, Wells, Rick Yudt, Joe Sibbitt and Chris Horton.
Taylor, Adams and the rest of the APSU Govs resume the march for an OVC title 8:30pm, Thursday, at the Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana as part of the OVC Tournament quarterfinal round against the victor between Eastern Illinois and Jacksonville State.