OGDEN -- Weber State will honor the 50 greatest players in its 50 years of Division I basketball at midcourt at the Dee Events Center at halftime of its regular season finale tonight.
One of those players will be on the court for the rest of the 7 p.m. game against Eastern Washington as the Wildcats try to extend their 10-game winning streak.
In three seasons, shooting guard Scott Bamforth has scored 1,195 points and is just two points shy of passing Rico Washington for 12th on the school's all-time scoring list.
The senior from Albuquerque, N.M., is also third in 3-pointers made in WSU school history with 225, none more electrifying for Scotty B. than the 3 he launched at the buzzer from just inside halfcourt to take down a Northern Colorado team that was undefeated in Big Sky play in January 2011.
"I would definitely say that's the main highlight (of my career)," Bamforth said. "Just because something like that doesn't happen all the time. It's just a once-in-a-lifetime thing. It was so big for our team that year, we were fighting to get a win (after Damian Lillard was lost for the season with a broken foot) and I was able to help us get that win. That's something that I'll always remember and the people that were involved will always remember."
Bamforth and forward Frank Otis will be honored prior to the game for Senior Night, an occasion that makes Bamforth reflect on his career.
"I've grown as a person over the years," Bamforth said. "It's kind of crazy that it's coming to an end. It's been fun. I've had a great time and I'm thankful for everybody that's helped me get here and helped me while I'm here."
Weber State's place in the Big Sky Conference race will be determined tonight. The Wildcats (23-5, 17-2) are currently in second place behind Montana. The Grizzlies can guarantee their right to host the league tournament with a win against Northern Arizona; the Wildcats could host only if they win and both Montana and Montana State lose at home.
Eastern Washington (10-20, 7-12) is still in contention for a Big Sky Tournament berth, but tonight is a must-win for the Eagles to keep their season alive.
Bamforth said he hasn't achieved everything he wanted yet in his WSU career, but he hopes to change that by the end of the season.
He came to Weber State in 2010 after playing his freshman season at Western Nebraska Community College. A broken arm kept Bamforth from playing his sophomore year there, which became the Wildcats' gain when he became the Big Sky newcomer of the year in 2010-11 and earned first-team all-Big Sky honors. He also ranked fourth in the country in 3-point percentage (.488) despite playing the season with an injured shoulder.
As a junior, he was second-team all-Big Sky after averaging 14.5 points per game.
If the 40-foot game-winner was the high of Bamforth's career, the low moment was being kept home from WSU's final game for disciplinary reasons.
"There were some tough times along the way, but Scott has really matured this year. He's grown up a lot and overall Scott's had really a terrific career here," Weber State coach Randy Rahe said.
Bamforth has given his heart and soul to the team and been a leader who takes the younger players under his wing, Rahe said, while comparing his effort to the gold standard at WSU: "Everybody talks about Damian Lillard's work ethic, it was outstanding, but Scott is right there."
None of the on-court challenges in Bamforth's career compare to losing both his parents as a teenager or nearly losing his wife Kendra and newborn son Kingzton in childbirth just before his junior season.
"Every obstacle I've been through, I've just learned from it and tried to be a better person from it," he said. "Just treat people better the next time, do things better the next time. I've just grown from each situation and each situation has helped me grow in a different way. I'm thankful for all of them even though some of them were tough, but it was good.
"That's life to me. You've just got to grow from each situation."
Rahe promised Bamforth this season could be one of the most fun he's ever had in basketball if he would let it.
Bamforth delivered his first career double-double Thursday (13 points, 12 rebounds) and is averaging 13.1 points per game, second on the Wildcats and 12th in the league. He also ranks fifth in Big Sky history in free throw percentage (.871).
Rahe said he's confident in Bamforth and Otis' futures, which could take them overseas to play professional basketball.
"I feel like now these two guys, after they graduate, will be successful in whatever happens to them, whether they're playing more basketball or whatever area of life they get into," he said. "I think they're going to be successful people and they're going to have good, happy lives and that's really what I'm concerned about with these kids. Both of them have really done that and have grown up to the point where I feel good about where they're going to be 10 years from now and that's part of our mission here as well."