FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The Sporting News announced its 2018-19 Midseason All-American squad and Arkansas sophomore Daniel Gafford was selected to the third team.
Gafford, on numerous preseason Player of the Year Watch Lists, Tennessee’s Grant Williams on the 15-player team.
Gafford leads the SEC with seven double-doubles (in 15 games) as well as leading the league in field goal percentage (..658), overall rebounding (9.5 rpg) and offensive rebounding (3.0 rpg). He additionally ranks second in field goals made (102) while ranking fourth in scoring (17.5 ppg) and blocked shots (2.2). He is the only player in the SEC to rank among the top four in each of those categories.
Nationally, Gafford ranks 12th in field goal percentage, 23rd in double-double and 28th in overall rebounding.
Gafford opened the season with a double-double (20 pts, 12 rebs) versus Texas. Two games later, he led Arkansas to a win over now nationally-ranked Indiana. Gafford was tabbed SEC Player of the Week for his effort versus the Hoosiers, scoring a then career-high 27 points and tying a then career-high with 12 rebounds. Gafford went on to set career highs for points (32 versus LSU) and rebounds (14 versus UTSA).
Gafford went 8-for-8 from the field in a win over Montana State, which tied a school record for best field goal percentage. Also helping his league-leading field goal percentage is that, of his 269 career field goals made, 44 percent (119) has been dunks. This year, Gafford had made 102 field goals, 44 being dunks.
Gafford has blocked at least one shot in 13 of 15 games this season, including 11 games with at least two rejections. In 50 career games, the sophomore already ranks ninth on the school’s all-time list for blocked shots with 109. In addition to his blocked shots, Gafford leads the team with 82 deflections this season, while ranking second on the team with 15 steals.