By Accaiya Evans, Broadside Correspondent
As the regular season has come to an end, it is evident that freshman forward Luke Hancock has been a vital addition to the George Mason University men’s basketball team.
After posting great numbers coming off the bench, Hancock looks to be a major force in the upcoming Colonial Athletic Association Tournament.
Hancock played in all 32 games of the regular season and started in only three games. However, his sixth-man role play has been a great asset to the success of the Patriots conference play this season.
Off the bench, Hancock leads the freshmen averaging 23 minutes per game, fifth highest on the team.
Hancock was named one of the top 25 freshmen by Basketball Prospectus in January and earned his spot on the CAA All-Rookie Team.
His contribution of 7.7 points and 3.5 rebounds per game has been the determining factor in the team’s margin of victory.
Hancock achieved season highs with 15 points against the the George Washington Colonials in early December and grabbed nine rebounds in a game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in the Puerto Rico Tip-off Tournament in November.
With his great court vision, Hancock has been one of the team’s best passers and he has ranked second on the team with 96 assists, one short of the team leader junior guard Cam Long’s record of 97.
A benefactor off the bench, Hancock hopes to play an increasingly vital role in the team’s offense.
According to Hancock, his ability to get the ball to teammates, his versatility and the energy he brings to the court will be crucial to his and the team’s future.
Hancock will use this offseason to tune up his defensive play and work on his long-range shooting.
Hancock’s recruitment was different than most college athletes.
While attending Hargrave Prep School, Mason’s assistant coaches came to see him play. While he impressed the assistant coaches, Hancock felt that his performance in front of Head Coach Jim Larranaga was less than inspiring.
He thought that he did not have a shot at being recruited by Mason, but within two weeks, Hancock received a surprising call from Mason to come on an official visit.
Hancock knew that Mason was where he wanted to be and, after receiving a full scholarship, he committed to Mason the next day.
In his personal time, Hancock loves to watch movies and hang out with his teammates. Aside from being a fan favorite on the court, Hancock sees himself as a key figure in the community.
“I am a good person,” said Hancock. “I like to have fun, but I always try to do the right thing and use discernment in any decision that I make.”
Hancock loves to see the excitement in the eyes of young fans and those who look up to him. He tries to make each experience for them special.
After losing a tough game to the Northeastern Huskies in the regular season finale, a 14-year-old fan named Jayson Garner asked Hancock for his autograph.
However, Hancock took it one step further and got Jayson an autograph of every player on the team.
While it had been a meaningful experience for Jayson, the moment meant a lot to Hancock himself.
Whether he is dishing another assist or signing his John Hancock, Luke has shown his maturity after just one season.