Monday, March 8, 2010

Fact's Big East Postseason Awards

This Big East season wasn't exactly what people were expecting when it started but it turned out to be one of the stronger top to bottom years in the history of the league.  There were surprises in Syracuse, Pitt and Marquette and disappointments in UConn and Notre Dame.  Heading into the season, no one thought Wes Johnson would be nearly as good as he has been and it was all but a slam dunk that Luke Harangody would win Player of the Year.  Well, the regular season came and went and we found out why they play the game. 
Here we go for the awards:

All Big East Team-
Scottie Reynolds, Villanova Guard
Luke Harangody, Notre Dame Forward
Jeremy Hazell, Seton Hall Guard
Da'Sean Butler, West Virginia Forward
Ashton Gibbs, Pittsburgh Guard
Greg Monroe, Georgetown Center

Player of The Year: Scottie Reynolds, Villanova
Reynolds has solidified himself as one of the best clutch players in all of college basketball as well as perhaps the best player ever to play for Villanova.  There have been times this season where Scottie has taken Villanova on his back and literally carried them to victory (Louisville game.)  Scottie's explosive scoring along with his tremendous leadership has made it a treat to watch him play the last four years. 

Coach of The Year: Buzz Williams, Marquette
I know that it's sexy to pick either Boeheim or Jamie Dixon for this award but in terms of doing the most with the least, Buzz Williams is a slam dunk.  Marquette was picked to be HORRIBLE and they've been anything but.  They could be a dark horse in the Big East tournament and for good reason as they have proven that they can compete with the top teams in the conference.  Williams has made the transition between Tom Crean and himself as smooth as can be when replacing such a good coach.

Rookie of The Year: Lance Stephenson, Cincinnati
Stephenson gets this award by default for a)not getting into trouble and b) not caving under ridiculous expectations.  Sometimes the expectations placed on a recruit/freshman is an unfair burden but Stephenson was able to score in double digits (despite his abysmal three point percentage.)

Most Improved Player: Ashton Gibbs, Pittsburgh
Gibbs went from averaging four points a game to becoming the featured player on a very good Pitt team.  Some will say that the whitey from Notre Dame deserves this, but he didn't have nearly the pressure on him as Gibbs did on most nights. 

Breakout Star: Wes Johnson, Syracuse
I had to create a special category for Johnson because he surprised everyone this year.  While he took his name out of the Player of the Year race with his inury, his achievment hasn't been blind to my eyes despite my blind hatred for Syracuse Correctional Center and miserable human beings like Jim Boeheim.  Johnson lifted his team to a whole new stratosphere and he deserves credit for doing so.

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