KU's Perry Ellis, Cliff Alexander highlight preseason all-Big 12 selections

Kansas forward Perry Ellis goes to the hoop against Toledo forward J.D. Weatherspoon during the first half on Monday, Dec. 30, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas forward Perry Ellis goes to the hoop against Toledo forward J.D. Weatherspoon during the first half on Monday, Dec. 30, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Junior forward Perry Ellis was the lone Kansas University men's basketball player named to the preseason all-Big 12 basketball team, voted on by the league's coaches.

Ellis was one of two Big 12 players named as a unanimous selection to the five-man first-team squad. One of two returning starters from last season, Ellis enters 2014-15 as Kansas' leading returning scorer (13.5) and rebounder (6.7) and on the heels of a third-team all-Big 12 selection.

KU freshman Cliff Alexander also earned preseason accolades by being named the early pick for co-freshman of the year. He shared the honor with Texas' Myles Turner, who chose UT over Kansas in a hotly contested recruiting battle.

Alexander, the No. 3 ranked player in the nation in his recruiting class, Alexander averaged 25 points, 16 rebounds and six blocks per game during his senior season in high school and was chosen the 2014 Naismith Boys High School Player of the Year.

The tie between Alexander and Turner marks only the second time in conference history there has been a tie for freshman honors (2003-04).

For the first time in Big 12 history, a West Virginia player has been named Big 12 preseason Player of the Year, as guard Juwan Staten was chosen as the top dog by the league's coaches.

Guard Bryce Dejean-Jones is the third Iowa State player in the last six years be picked as top newcomer. Dejean-Jones will be eligible to play immediately after transferring from UNLV.

Staten is the top returning scorer in the Big 12 after leading the league with 18.1 points per game overall in 2013-14. The senior guard also topped the conference in minutes played (37.3 mpg) while ranking second in assists (193) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.8) and third in field goal percentage (.486). He also averaged a league-best 19.9 points in Big 12 play.

Preseason Player of the Year

Juwan Staten, West Virginia, G, 6-1, 190, Sr., Dayton, Ohio/Dayton

Preseason Newcomer of the Year

Bryce Dejean-Jones, Iowa State, G, 6-5, 210, Sr., Los Angeles, Calif./Taft/USC/UNLV

Preseason Freshmen of the Year

Cliff Alexander, Kansas, F, 6-8, 240, Fr., Chicago, Ill./Curie

Myles Turner, Texas, F, 6-11, 240, Fr., Bedford, Texas/Euless Trinity

2014-15 Preseason All-Big 12 Team

Georges Niang, Iowa State F 6-7 240 Jr.

Perry Ellis, Kansas F 6-8 225 Jr.

Marcus Foster, K-State G 6-2 200 So.

Buddy Hield, Oklahoma G 6-4 209 Jr.

Juwan Staten, West Virginia G 6-1 190 Sr.