The Collegian
Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Three Spiders Basketball players named to NABC All-District Team

<p>Redshirt junior guard Blake Francis defends a McNeese State player as he attempts to drive to the basket.</p>

Redshirt junior guard Blake Francis defends a McNeese State player as he attempts to drive to the basket.

This past Monday, March 23, juniors Blake Francis, Jacob Gilyard and Grant Golden were all selected to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) District 4 Second-Team. 

The NABC is an organization of collegiate basketball coaches from all across the United States. Its 24 Division 1 districts are loosely based on conference alignment, with some districts containing several conferences while others are made up of only one conference. District 4 consists of all 14 Atlantic 10 Conference teams. 

The three Spiders were the first Richmond selections to an NABC All-District team since T.J. Cline in 2017. UR was also one of five schools in the country to have three players receive an All-District honor, joining Gonzaga, Akron, San Diego State and Belmont. No other team in the A-10 had more than two All-District selections. 

Gilyard and Golden

Jacob Gilyard gives forward Grant Golden a pregame handshake as his name is announced during the starting lineups at the Robins Center. Photo courtesy of Richmond Athletics

Gilyard led the nation in steals, totaling 99 and averaging 3.2 per game. He also averaged 12.7 points and 5.7 assists. He was a semifinalist for the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Award while also receiving the A-10 defensive players of the year award and a First Team All-A10 selection. Francis led the team in scoring this season with 17.7 points per game. Despite missing a large portion of the season because of an injury, he was still selected for the All-A10 Second Team. Golden also received a Second Team All-A10 selection, averaging 13.4 points and 6.9 rebounds.

After a team record of 14 conference wins this season, the Spiders' season was unfortunately cut short because of the cancellation of NCAA postseason tournaments because of COVID-19. The team has no seniors on its roster and will be back next year with all of its current players and some new additions, including transfer Connor Crabtree and several recruits.

Contact sports editor Krystian Hajduczka at

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