Big Ten Morning Five: 03.06.12 EditionPosted by Ryan Terpstra on March 6th, 2012
- The Big Ten Championship may be split three ways, but don’t tell Michigan that it doesn’t mean something. The Wolverines did their part by beating Penn State on Sunday and then watched as OSU got past MSU and helped turn Michigan into co-champions. Disappointment reigned in East Lansing, but for the Maize and Blue, they feel like they’ve earned this banner. Michigan hasn’t won a conference title since 1986, so even an tri-shared one is a big deal for John Beilein and his players.
- There may be a bitter taste in Spartan fans’ mouths after missing an opportunity to claim an outright championship on Sunday, but Michigan State has plenty to be proud of regarding this season and they also have individual hardware to remember it by. Tom Izzo and senior forward Draymond Green picked up some honors, as Izzo was named Big Ten Coach of the Year and Green was named Big Ten Player of the Year. For Izzo, it is his third COY award, and Green was also the only unanimous selection to the all-Big Ten first team as well as being voted onto the all-defensive squad.
- One of the best debates in the conference this season was whether Cody Zeller or Trey Burke was having a better freshman season. Both made a huge impact on their respective teams and both were named Big Ten Co-Freshman of the Year. Each player was also named to the all-Big Ten second team, cementing their spot as big-time players in the conference, even as true freshman. Burke was chosen by the media, and Zeller by the coaches in the award voting. Let the debate continue!
- For Robbie Hummel, his journey at Purdue has been both successful and frustrating. His battle with multiple injuries is well-documented, but his play on the floor has always been top-notch when his body has cooperated. Hummel became just the third player in Purdue history to be named to the all-Big Ten first team three times in his career. All the rehabilitation and hard work Hummel had to put in just to get back on the court was well worth it, as he returned to form and had another great season for the Boilermakers.
- Iowa was represented on the postseason award squads, with senior Matt Gatens named to the all-Big Ten second team by the media (third by the coaches), and freshman forward Aaron White selected to the all-Big Ten freshman squad. But head coach Fran McCaffery still had some questions about where his players and others were placed. McCaffery thought Gatens deserved all-Big Ten defensive team honors, and had other questions about guys like Cody Zeller and Tim Frazier.