July 31, 2007
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - UC Santa Barbara's Chris Devine, a two-time All-Big West forward and the team's second-leading scorer in each of the last two seasons, was awarded a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA, Gaucho head coach Bob Williams announced Tuesday.
Devine, who missed all of 2003-04 and 2004-05 with knee injuries, was listed as a sophomore in 2005-06, his first season of activity at UCSB. That season, he averaged 12.2 points and 5.9 rebounds per game while shooting 55.3% from the field and 77.7% from the free throw line. Following the 2005-06 campaign, Devine was named Second Team All-Big West and was honored with the league's Hustle Award. Last year, the 6-foot-8, 230-pounder from Eagle River, Alaska, was listed as a junior. Again, he was selected Second Team All-Big West after averaging 14.1 points and a team-leading 6.6 rebounds per game. He shot 53.0% from the field and 73.9% from the free throw line.
"This is huge for us," Williams said. "In his first two years, Chris has been such a big part of what we are trying to accomplish. His skills, personality and competitiveness are all elements that are important to our program and I look forward to having him back for two more years."
The NCAA decision to award Devine a sixth year means that the 2005-06 season is officially recognized as his freshman season. The statistics he compiled in his first year are thus his freshman statistics and he now ranks in a number of UCSB's freshman top-10s, including first in points with 355.
The Gauchos will enter the 2007-08 season with three seniors on the roster instead of four. Guard Alex Harris, who teamed with Devine to give UCSB its highest single-season one-two scoring punch in school history in 2006-07, will be joined by forwards Ivan Elliott and Nedim Pajevic, a transfer from Weber State who redshirted the 2006-07 season, as the only seniors on the team.
The 2007-08 season will get an early start as Santa Barbara's returnees will play five games on a nine-day tour of British Columbia, Canada, in early September.