STILLWATER — All season long, Big 12 coaches raved about Oklahoma State freshman Marcus Smart. And they backed it up, voting him conference Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year.
Apparently, the league’s media were listening, as Smart earned both honors again Monday — Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year — when The Associated Press released its All-Big teams and award winners.
And recognition for Smart didn’t end there, with Sporting News naming him national Freshman of the Year, as well as first-team All-American. “It’s just such a blessing,” Smart said. “I couldn’t do anything without my teammates. They deserve all the credit.”
In addition, Smart was named one of five finalists for the Bob Cousy Award, presented to the nation’s outstanding point guard. The other Cousy finalists: Matthew Delladova of Saint Mary’s College, Michael Carter-Williams of Syracuse, Shane Larkin of Miami and Trey Burke of Michigan. “These five players truly represent the elite in college basketball,” said John L Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame.
OSU also placed Markel Brown on the AP All-Big Second Team, while Le’Bryan Nash was named honorable mention.
Smart is just the fourth Cowboy to make Sporting News’ All-America first team and only the second in the past sixty years. He joins James Anderson (2010), Gale McArthur (1951) and Bob Kurland (1945 and ’46).
Along with the OSU freshman, rounding out the Sporting News All-America starting five were Georgetown’s Otto Porter, Gonzaga’s Kelly Olynyk, Indiana’s Victor Oladipo and Michigan’s Burke.
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