Final 20 Candidates Announced for 2013 Bob Cousy Award
As we are entering the midway point of the college basketball season, some of the major awards are starting to take shape. Every year at this time, the Bob Cousy award for the NCAA's top point guard trims its list to 20. These finalists were announced and instead of just telling the 20 names, lets rank them on the likelihood of coming home with this award. This of course will be ranked on their play up to this point and predicted play for the rest of the college season.
1. Trey Burke, Michigan
2. Michael Carter Williams, Syracuse
3. Pierre Jackson, Baylor
4. Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State
5. Nate Wolters, South Dakota State
6. Isaiah Canaan, Murray State
7. Erick Green, Virginia Tech
8. Ray McCallum, Detroit
9. Phil Pressey, Missouri
10. Lorenzo Brown, NC State
11. Peyton Siva, Louisville
12. Keith Appling, Michigan State
13. DJ Cooper, Ohio
14. Jahii Carson, Arizona State
15. Kevin Pangos, Gonzaga
16. Kendall Williams, New Mexico
17. Quinn Cook, Duke
18. Aaron Craft, Ohio State
19. Andre Hollins, Minnesota
20. Mark Lyons, Arizona
Was a tough list to make, though ultimately it looks like a two horse race between Trey Burke and Michael Carter-Williams. Even with Carter-Williams putting up incredible assist numbers, seems like this is Burke's award to lose. If he keeps up his production and impact during conference season, he will be in the running for National Player of the Year, much less the Big 10 award that was once thought to be a lock for Indiana's Cody Zeller.
While I would not have thought Pierre Jackson would be this high in the rankings, his play has been incredibly impressive. If Baylor has a strong Big 12 season, which seems entirely probable, he could hold off Kansas' Ben McLemore and Jeff Withey for Player of the Year honors. Marcus Smart will be in the Big 12 POY conversation as well, though Oklahoma State might have a tougher time in conference. Smart's all-around play definitely has him in talks of possible All-American status.
Flip Pressey's inconsistent shooting is the reason he falls so low, though I expect Missouri to really play well in their inaugural SEC stint. Nate Wolters, Isaiah Canaan and Ray McCallum all should really boost their numbers once conference play begins. The question will be whether they are still not penalized for playing in smaller conferences. Wolters played the best against top competition, though his missing a chance against Minnesota was a shame. Either way, those three are all near the top of most NCAA PG lists.
Erick Green might have been quite a bit higher, though it seems ACC play will be incredibly hard on Virginia Tech as far as the standings are concerned. His scoring is still very difficult to overlook, much less his value to the team that had some nice wins in non-conference play. Lorenzo Brown may have been the favorite pre-season and can still get back near the top of the list with a strong ACC season from NC State.
CJ McCollum's unfortunate broken foot more than likely cost him a top 3 spot on this list had he remained healthy for the season. The list as a whole was solid, though arguments could be made that there were a few snubs. Matthew Dellavedova of St. Mary's may be considered a SG, though he seems to be much more of a PG than, for instance, Mark Lyons. Lyons has had a nice season for a good team, though his PG abilities are not necessarily omnipresent. One other player that could have made a case was Eric Atkins of Notre Dame, who has an excellent assist to turnover ratio as well as much improved shooting from the field for a really strong Notre Dame team that seems to follow his lead.