Alex Linden, Sports Information Director
LINCOLN – Nebraska Wesleyan star basketball player Nate Schimonitz received the state’s top recognition recently from both of the largest daily newspapers in Nebraska. He was named the Midlands State College Athlete of the Year by the Omaha World Herald and earlier in the summer he was recognized by the Lincoln Journal Star as their State College Men’s Athlete of the Year.
Schimonitz, a First-Team NCAA III All-American as a senior, finished his career as one of three players in NWU program history to score over 2,000 points. As a senior he averaged 25.4 points per game to rank 10th in the nation, while averaging 5.6 assists per game to lead the American Rivers Conference. He was a four-time First-Team All-Conference selection as the team’s starting point guard.
NWU head coach Dale Wellman told the Journal Star, “”He’s been the perfect player for me on and off the court for the past four years. He’s won a lot of awards and all of them are unbelievably deserving because he’s made himself — he was really good when he came here — but he made himself into the player he is today, and he’s just been a terrific, terrific player for us.”
It marks the second straight year and third time in the past five years that NWU basketball produced the Journal Star Male Athlete of the Year. Ryan Garver won the award in 2019 and Trey Bardsley earned the honor in 2016. Overall this is the 16th time that a NWU student athlete was named the Journal Star Male State College Athlete of the Year since they began the award in 1955.
Schimonitz is the first NWU student athlete to earn Midlands Male State College Athlete of the Year recognition from the Omaha World Herald since 1986. He is now one of four athletes to claim the honor joining Dana Janssen (1985, 1986), Kurt Nielsen (1973) and Dwight Tietjen (!966).
“I don’t think I could have imagined all of this,” Schimonitz said. “I have had so many great experiences … What we were able to accomplish as a class, was definitely miles above anything I could have dreamed of.”
Schimonitz 2019-20 Honors