Ohio Wesleyan University senior Nate Axelrod (Dublin/Coffman) has been named one of 10 men’s finalists for the Jostens Trophy, it was announced by the Rotary Club of Salem, Va., which sponsors the award.
Axelrod ranks fifth in NCAA Division III in assists (6.8/game). He leads the North Coast Athletic Conference in scoring (19.2 points/game) and assists, becoming the first player in conference history to lead the league in scoring and assists in a season.
Axelrod also ranks second in the league in free throw percentage (.857), is tied for ninth in steals (1.2/game), and is 14th in 3-point field goals (1.9/game). He finished his career as the second Ohio Wesleyan men’s basketball player and the fourth in NCAC history to surpass the 2,000-point mark, and is Ohio Wesleyan’s all-time leader in assists (655). Axelrod is a 2-time All-America selection and was an Academic All-America choice in 2017.
The Jostens Trophy is a national award created by the Rotary Club of Salem to honor the most outstanding men’s and women’s NCAA Division III basketball players of the year. The award takes into account three vital parts: basketball ability, academic prowess, and community service. The trophy models the Rotary International motto of “Service Above Self” by recognizing those who truly fit the ideal of the well-rounded NCAA Division III student-athlete. This season marks the 21st presentation of the awards, with the inaugural trophies bestowed in 1998.
The Rotary Club of Salem is responsible for the initial review of nominations and narrowed the collection of candidates over the past two weeks. The Club’s Jostens Trophy Committee employs a numerical rating system in determining the lists of finalists. The system ensures an objective process thru the first round of vetting.
A selection committee of 30 or more individuals from various associations with Division III men’s and women’s basketball will vote from among the finalists. The Jostens Trophy will be presented on Thursday, March 15, in Salem, Va., in association with the men’s basketball championship semifinals and finals.
OWU Sports Information contributed to this report.