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Phills Selected To NABC Give Back Team

Trey Phills (Joe Murphy photo)
Trey Phills (Joe Murphy photo)

One Of 10 Recognized For Outstanding Community Service Efforts

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Trey Phills '19 excelled on the court during his Yale career, earning a number of accolades, including All-Ivy recognition. He also was active in the community. And for that, he has received another prestigious honor. Phills was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches 2019 Give Back Team, which recognizes 10 men's student-athletes from across the nation for their outstanding community service efforts.

Phills, who earlier this month during graduation weekend was the male recipient of Yale Athletics' Ford Student-Athlete Community Outreach Award, has been active both on the Yale campus and in the New Haven community. Each fall since his sophomore year, he volunteered in the Cultural Connections' pre-orientation program for incoming students. In his junior year, Phills participated in Alpha Phi Alpha's "Go to High School – Go to College" initiative at a New Haven magnet school, speaking to students about valuable life lessons and peer pressure. In addition, Phills has volunteered at a local Baptist Church, helping serve the community at a monthly food pantry.

Phills, who also was selected as a candidate for the Men's Basketball Senior Class Award earlier this year, is the son of former NBA guard Bobby Phills, who tragically died in a car accident after leaving a Charlotte Hornet pre-game shootaround in 2000. Trey wears jersey No. 13 like his father and often speaks about impacting the community in a similar fashion to his father, who was beloved for his service in the Charlotte area.

A graduate of Charlotte Christian High School, Phills was a sociology major in Ezra Stiles College at Yale. In 2017-18, he was named to the NABC Honors Court, which recognizes the talents and gifts he possesses off the court and the hard work he has exhibited in the classroom. During his four seasons with the team, Yale men's basketball won a pair of Ivy League championships and upset Baylor in the first round of the 2016 NCAA Tournament.

The 2019 NABC Give Back Team includes five student-athletes from NCAA Division I and five from NCAA Division II and III and the NAIA, selected from a group of 63 nominated by college coaches and sports information directors across the country. 

Joining Phills as the NCAA Division I representatives are Sam Dowd of Idaho State University, JT Escobar of the University of North Florida, Aaron Jordan of the University of Illinois and Horace Spencer of Auburn University.

Representing NCAA Division II-III and the NAIA are Jordan Bonner of Wesleyan University, Daniel Burchette of North Greenville University, Savonte Chappell of Christopher Newport University, Brian Pearson of the University of Alaska-Anchorage and Kai Skinner of Westminster (PA) College.

"The NABC is proud to celebrate the 10 young men selected for this year's NABC Give Back Team in recognition of their exceptional selfless humanitarian acts," said NABC Executive Director Jim Haney. "These men's college basketball student-athletes have made significant contributions to assist those in need while helping lift the human spirit."

Phills is the latest in a long list of Bulldogs who have been recognized for their off-the-court accomplishments during James Jones' tenure as Yale's Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954 Head Coach. Two student athletes have been named Rhodes Scholar. The most recent is J.T. Flowers, who played for Yale in 2013-14, and was selected as a 2018 Rhodes Scholar. In 2014-15, Matt Townsend '15 was selected as a Rhodes Scholar and was named the men's basketball Academic All-American of the Year. Javier Duren '15 was a candidate for the 2014-15 Allstate Good Works Team. In 2015-16, Justin Sears was a finalist for the national Senior CLASS Award, which focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

Report filed by Tim Bennett (, Yale Sports Publicity