Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Midseason All Big 12 Teams

ISU has hit the mid-way point of the Big 12 conference season. Time to update the all Big 12 teams. All stats are conference-only, through February 4th.
DeAndre Kane is still my Big 12 Player of the Year, leading in the narrowest of margins over Marcus Smart. Kane's numbers are a bit lower in conference play than in the non-conference but are still plenty impressive considering the first half of the Cyclones schedule figures to be much harder than the second. Smart being in the hunt for POY seems to be a surprise, since he and OSU have struggled of late. He contributes, like Kane, in nearly every category. This race will go down to the wire.

As I said in the non-conference update, Ejim is playing out of his mind. His scoring is still strong (2nd in conference) and he's put a renewed emphasis on rebounding (5th in the conference). The top four players are well ahead of the rest of the pack. If he keeps up his numbers, there's no way he gets kept off the first team.

If Kane doesn't win POY, he'll win newcomer. Otherwise it's between Wiggins and Embiid. There's no one else even close.

At this point I've got Niang and Houge on the third team. I'd be a bit surprised if ISU gets four out of the top 15 spots, so I'd guess Niang ends up on the third team and Houge gets honorable mention.

-I don't think Kansas gets shut out of the first team. They'll win the Big 12. Spots 5 through 10 are all really tight. Wiggins makes it. Either because he's a top 5 pick or because his numbers get a little better as their schedule lightens up. Depending how this shakes out, I might have to start giving bonus points for being a projected lottery pick (see Ben McLemore last year).

-ISU and OSU are overrepresented based on their standings right now. The Cyclones will crank off a bunch of wins over the last nine games, and will be in the race for second. Who knows what's up with the Cowboys. It should be noted that my individual rankings incorporate team standing.

-Overall I feel good about who and where everyone is on these teams. No obvious omissions or overrated players.

-Eron Harris (media preseason all-big 12 pick) is just barely ahead of Monte Morris.

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