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Cade Cunningham Named Big 12 Player of the Year

OSU’s first Big 12 Player of the Year since Marcus Smart.

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[Photo via Courtney Bay, Oklahoma State Athletics]

Cade Cunningham cleaned house in the Big 12’s yearly awards.

The Big 12 yearly awards were announced Monday, and Cunningham was named the leauge’s Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year and to the All-Big 12 First Team.

Cunningham is OSU’s first Big 12 Player of the Year since Marcus Smart in 2013, and he is just the fourth freshman to ever win the honor.

Cunningham joins Michael Beasley, Kevin Durant and Smart as the only players to win Big 12 Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year in the same season.

Cunningham becomes the Cowboys’ first Big 12 First Team selection since Jawun Evans in 2017. That means Cunningham is the Cowboys’ first Big 12 First Teamer of the Mike Boynton era. In fact, Cunningham is the first player under Boynton who has earned more than an honorable mention.

Cunningham is the program’s first Freshman of the Year since Jawun Evans in 2016.

Cunningham finished the regular season averaging a league-best 19.7 points per game, more than two points higher than Austin Reaves, the second-place finisher.

Cunningham also finished tied for ninth in rebounds per game with 6.3. His 3.5 assists a game are good for 12th among Big 12 players.

This season, Cunningham was a seven-time conference Newcomer of the Week. He was also the league’s Player of the Week twice. His nine weekly awards are the most of any OSU player in a season in program history. Second place is Marcus Smart with five awards in the 2012-13 season.

Cunningham scored at least 20 points in 11 of his 22 games this season. His best performance of the year came in Norman on Feb. 27 when Cunningham scored a season-high 40 points on Oklahoma. He also had a season-high 11 rebounds in that game.

Likekele Picks Up Second Honorable Mention Nod

OSU junior Isaac Likekele picked up his second consecutive Big 12 Honorable Mention.

Likekele has averaged 9.8 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists in his 19 games played this season. He has been hampered with injuries in the latter part of the year or else he would’ve likely made it on the second or third team.

Full Awards

PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State, G, Fr.

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Davion Mitchell, Baylor, G, Jr.

NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR
Mac McClung, Texas Tech, G, Jr.**

FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State, G**

SIXTH MAN AWARD
Kai Jones, Texas, F, So.

MOST IMPROVED PLAYER
David McCormack, Kansas, F, Jr.

COACH OF THE YEAR
Scott Drew, Baylor

All-Big 12 First Team
Jared Butler, Baylor**
Davion Mitchell, Baylor
Austin Reaves, Oklahoma
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State**
Derek Culver, West Virginia

All-Big 12 Second Team
Marcus Garrett, Kansas
David McCormack, Kansas
Andrew Jones, Texas
Mac McClung, Texas Tech
Miles McBride, West Virginia

All-Big 12 Third Team
MaCio Teague, Baylor
Rasir Bolton, Iowa State
RJ Nembhard, TCU
Matt Coleman III, Texas
Courtney Ramey, Texas
Terrence Shannon, Jr., Texas Tech

All-Big 12 Honorable Mention (Listed alphabetically by school)
Mark Vital (Baylor), Jalen Coleman-Lands (Iowa State), Ochai Agbaji (Kansas), Christian Braun (Kansas), Mike McGuirl (Kansas State), De’Vion Harmon (Oklahoma),Isaac Likekele (Oklahoma State), Mike Miles (TCU), Greg Brown (Texas), Kai Jones (Texas), Jericho Sims (Texas), Kevin McCullar (Texas Tech), Sean McNeil (West Virginia), Taz Sherman (West Virginia)

Big 12 All-Defensive Team
Jared Butler, Baylor
Davion Mitchell, Baylor**
Mark Vital, Baylor**
Marcus Garrett, Kansas**
Gabe Osabuohien, West Virginia

Big 12 All-Newcomer Team
Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua, Baylor
Jalen Wilson, Kansas
Greg Brown, Texas
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State**
Mac McClung, Texas Tech**

Big 12 All-Freshman Team
Jalen Wilson, Kansas**
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State**
Mike Miles, TCU
Greg Brown, Texas**
Jalen Bridges, West Virginia

** – Unanimous Selection
A tie resulted in an additional place on the third team.

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