Xavier’s Rayshawn Mart chosen first-team NAIA All-America

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Rayshawn Mart

NEW ORLEANS — For the first time in 47 seasons, Xavier University of Louisiana has a first-team NAIA All-American in men’s basketball: Rayshawn Mart.

Mart averaged 21.6 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.8 steals per game during the 2020-21 season. He helped XULA repeat as Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Tournament champion and — for the first time since 2007 — win in the opening round of NAIA nationals.

XULA’s only other first-team NAIA All-American in this sport was Bruce Seals as a sophomore in 1972-73. Mart is the first NAIA first-team All-American from a New Orleans school since SUNO’s Roberto Ferriar in 2003-04.

Mart — a 6-foot-3 senior guard from Houma, La., and a graduate of H.L. Bourgeois High School — is the first men’s player since Keith Johnson in 1997-98 to lead XULA in scoring, rebounding and steals during the same season.

Mart led the GCAC in points per game — the first XULA man to do that since Juan Mercier in 1986-87 — and Mart is the first XULA man to average 20-or-more points a game in a season since Mercier’s 22.9 in 1987-88.

Mart collected a slew of honors this season, including GCAC Player of the Year — he’s the first ever from XULA men’s basketball to win that award — and GCAC Tournament MVP.

The NAIA selected three All-America teams of 12 players apiece. XULA’s Makye Richard was one of 42 to earn honorable mention. Richard, a 6-2 senior guard from Morgan City, La., and a graduate of Morgan City High School, averaged 13.6 points and 5.8 rebounds in 2020-21 and scored a game-high 25 points in the NAIA nationals first-round victory against Cumberlands.

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