Originally published March 8, 2015 at 01:11p.m., updated March 9, 2015 at 12:03a.m.

Squeezed out for player of the year, Perry Ellis earns first-team All-Big 12 selection

Three other Jayhawks honored by Big 12 coaches

Kansas forward Perry Ellis (34) throws down a dunk off of a lob pass over TCU guard Trey Zeigler (32) during the second half, Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas forward Perry Ellis (34) throws down a dunk off of a lob pass over TCU guard Trey Zeigler (32) during the second half, Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Kansas University junior forward Perry Ellis on Sunday was named first-team All-Big 12 in a vote of league coaches.

Sophomore point guard Frank Mason III was tapped second-team All-Big 12, while sophomore Wayne Selden Jr. and freshman Kelly Oubre Jr. were named honorable mention. Oubre also made the all-newcomer team.

Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield, who was joined on the first team by Ellis, Rico Gathers (Baylor), Georges Niang (Iowa State) and Juwan Staten (West Virginia), was named player of the year. West Virginia’s Bob Huggins was coach of the year, Iowa State’s Jameel McKay defensive player of the year, Oklahoma’s TaShawn Thomas newcomer of the year, Texas’ Myles Turner freshman of the year and Baylor’s Taurean Prince recipient of the Sixth Man Award.

“We were all hopeful that Perry would get player of the year, but there were several guys who were deserving. I’m happy that Perry is on the first team,” KU coach Bill Self said. “I’m also happy for Frank that he was recognized. He’s had a great year and certainly was deserving of second team. Our other players mentioned were Kelly and Wayne, and I’m proud Kelly was selected to the all-newcomer team. I thought ‘Huggs’ was well deserving of the coach of the year.”

Ellis was named third-team all-league as a sophomore, while Selden was also named honorable mention as a freshman. Ellis is the only player in the league to rank in the top 10 in scoring (sixth, 14.2 ppg), rebounding (fourth, 7.0 rpg) and field-goal percentage (sixth, .471).

“It’s certainly nice to be recognized favorably by the league coaches, but I kind of feel like I did last year with Andrew (Wiggins),” Self said. “Although Andrew didn’t win player of the year, I knew he was right there and was hopeful that he would have won it. I feel the same way about Perry this year.”

Of second-teamer Mason, who made seven free throws in the last 30 seconds Saturday and scored 21 points against Oklahoma, KU freshman backup point guard Devonté Graham said: “He’s our leader. He’s starting point guard for Kansas. You have to be a leader. He leads by example. Guys feed off his energy. When he’s going, we’re going. He does a great job of leading.”

KU has had a conference-best 26 first-team selections in the 19-year history of the conference. KU has had a first-team pick for 15 consecutive years and 17 times in 19 years. KU also has had a league-best 99 All-Big 12 selections, totaling first-, second-, third-, honorable mention, all-defensive and all-newcomer team honorees. Texas is second with 75.

All-Big 12 first team: Ellis, Gathers, Niang, Hield, Staten. Second-team: Mason, Kenny Chery, Taurean Prince, Monté Morris, Le’Bryan Nash. Third-team: Jameel McKay, TaShawn Thomas, Phil Forte, Isaiah Taylor, Myles Turner. Honorable mention: Oubre, Selden, Dustin Hogue, Marcus Foster, Thomas Gipson, Nino Williams, Isaiah Cousins, Ryan Spangler, Kyan Anderson, Jonathan Holmes, Devin Williams.

All-defensive team: Gathers, McKay, Michael Cobbins, Anthony Hickey, Turner, Jevon Carter. All-newcomer team: Oubre, McKay, Thomas, Hickey, Turner.

Lucas excels: KU sophomore forward Landen Lucas had a career-high 13 points and career-best 12 rebounds in Saturday’s 75-73 loss at Oklahoma

“Oh, man, he played well. He played big down in the post,” Graham said. “He got a lot of rebounds. He was very helpful today. I’m glad he stepped up. It will give him some confidence heading into the postseason.”

Forward Jamari Traylor said: “Landen stepped up. I feel a lot of guys stepped up. We definitely had a lot of fight coming back (from 11-point deficit). Devonté showed a lot of guts. He made some big shots down the stretch. Everybody was doing what they could.”

Quite a season: The Jayhawks (24-7 overall, 13-5 Big 12) won the league by one game over Iowa State and OU (12-6).

“We had a remarkable year considering some of the stuff we’ve gone through,” Self said. “Also, our talent level is really good. I will not apologize for that, but probably not the same as some Kansas teams we’ve run out there in a year the league has been the best it’s ever been.

“It’s been a great year,” he added. “That was a good effort by us (in 75-73 loss to OU). Nobody was laying down. Nobody was playing just to play close (with Ellis, Cliff Alexander, Brannen Greene out and Selden not 100 percent healed from sprained ankle). It was a good effort by us. We just got beat.”

KU will meet either Kansas State or TCU at 1:30 p.m. Thursday in a first-round Big 12 tournament game to be shown on ESPN2.

Coach of the Year: Bob Huggins, West Virginia

Player of the Year: Buddy Hield, Oklahoma

Defensive Player of the Year: Jameel McKay, Iowa State

Sixth Man Award: Taurean Prince, Baylor

Newcomer of the Year: TaShawn Thomas, Oklahoma

Freshman of the Year: Myles Turner, Texas

First Team all-Big 12

Rico Gathers, Baylor

Georges Niang, Iowa State

Perry Ellis, Kansas

Buddy Hield, Oklahoma

Juwan Staten, West Virginia

Second Team all-Big 12

Kenny Chery, Baylor

Taurean Prince, Baylor

Monté Morris, Iowa State

Frank Mason III, Kansas

Le'Bryan Nash, Oklahoma State

Third Team all-Big 12

Jameel McKay, Iowa State

TaShawn Thomas, Oklahoma

Phil Forte, Oklahoma State

Isaiah Taylor, Texas

Myles Turner, Texas

Honorable Mention all-Big 12

Dustin Hogue (Iowa State), Kelly Oubre (Kansas), Wayne Selden (Kansas), Marcus Foster (Kansas State), Thomas Gipson (Kansas State), Nino Williams (Kansas State), Isaiah Cousins (Oklahoma), Ryan Spangler (Oklahoma), Kyan Anderson (TCU), Jonathan Holmes (Texas), Devin Williams (West Virginia)

2014-15 Big 12 all-defensive team

Rico Gathers, Baylor

Jameel McKay, Iowa State

Michael Cobbins, Oklahoma State

Anthony Hickey, Oklahoma State

Myles Turner, Texas

Jevon Carter, West Virginia

2014-15 Big 12 all-newcomer team

Jameel McKay, Iowa State

Kelly Oubre, Kansas

TaShawn Thomas, Oklahoma

Anthony Hickey, Oklahoma State

Myles Turner, Texas


Don Burgundy 5 years, 2 months ago

Who knew finishing 5th in your conference netted you a Big 12 COY award.

Robin Smith 5 years, 2 months ago

You have a fine point, but the success they've had this year after struggling to integrate into in the Big12, combined with the absolute fervor they play with, makes this pick an unsurprising selection.

Joe Ross 5 years, 2 months ago

All-around good showing for the Hawks. Proud of Perry!

Dale Stringer 5 years, 2 months ago

It is too bad there isn't an All Star Conference tournament after the championship. Imagine to team we would put together with these 15 guys. It would work out well since there are 32 conferences (at my count). Five more games at most for the players and a good way to say which conference is best.

While I'm adding games I want to see, Would like Athletic Directors Sheahon Zenger and Jerry Hughes (University of Central Missouri) get together and start up the Phog Allen Classic. Dr. Allen coached at both schools. It would have to be a preseason game since UCM is D-II. Each school would host every other year. All the proceeds should go to a youth sports charity or children's hospital. We could even at in Baker and Haskill universities since he coached their teams too.

Brianna Zaleski 5 years, 2 months ago

It's a sham that the opposing coaches vote for COY. These coaches are so jealous of Self for, year after year, making the look 2nd tier. I realize he can't win it every year, but this year he did more w less than he has in years past. Hell, he single handedly willed and coached Perry to 1st team status.

Aaron Paisley 5 years, 2 months ago

Bill Self doesn't win COY every year for the same reason LeBron doesn't win the MVP every year. Everyone knows Self is the best coach and so they reward other coaches who significantly overachieve during the season.

Dirk Medema 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm not sure "willed" is the most appropriate word. Fortunately, Coach Self did adapt his offense to better suit the skills of his best player - allowing him the room to work in space instead of trying to force him to what he is not - a "power" forward. When Perry was allowed the freedom to move away from and face up to the basket (mid-January?), he began to flourish more than ever.

This could also be huge for Coach moving forward - showing recruits that he is willing and able to work with the skill sets they bring to the table to maximize their performance as well as that of the team.

Rodney Crain 5 years, 2 months ago

I think they got this right.

Congrats to all the Jayhawks.

Very Proud of Perry too!

Kevin Holt 5 years, 2 months ago

I think they got it wrong. Lately, the talk centers around how the talent gap between the Jayhawks and the rest of the league has diminished. It appears the Coaches agree since out the top 15 players in the league, only 2 come from KU, while 3 come from Baylor and ISU, and even OU, OSU, UT got 2 each. If our players aren't better than the rest of the players in the league (which is also questionable) then our coaching MUST be. It's a joke that Coach Self isn't COY. This shouldn't be graded on a curve. But I would bet that Coach Self isn't too concerned with what these other coaches think about him...he'll just smile and think about the rings.

Robin Smith 5 years, 2 months ago

Buddy Hield is well-deserving of the POY. Really like that guy. Just wish we had boxed him out, smh.

Andy Hess 5 years, 2 months ago

"Squeezed Out?" He's only been playing really well for the last 10 games or so. Before that he was mediocre at best. If Perry is the conference player of the year, we've got a pretty sorry conference this year.

Andy Hess 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't need to read stat lines. I watch the games. that's plenty of evidence for me.

Arthur Ankeney 5 years, 2 months ago

Ellis may have been the best player of the last 4-5 weeks, but Hield was the best player on the season. They got this right.

Nick Brungardt 5 years, 2 months ago

Awesome accomplishments by our guys! I do wish we would have had a guy make the first team all-defense list.

Tom Jones 5 years, 2 months ago

WVU was picked to finish tied for 6th and they finished 5th.

Based on the talent (heck, just look at the all-conference teams), Self should have been a no-brainer this year, sorry.

Joel Hood 5 years, 2 months ago

Big 12 Coach of the Year Award...

AKA: The Anyone-Other-Than-Bill-Self-Because-We-Can't-Give-it-to-Him-every-year Award

Don Papst 5 years, 2 months ago

Just winning the 11th straight title should be enough to be named COY. With all the new talent these coaches have to contend with and nurture each year, and playing in what everyone says is the toughest conference in the nation, 11 in a row is just a sick stat. Maybe all these people that vote should be invited to AFH and given a tour of our trophies and rings. I do not think any of them have a clue as to what it takes to accomplish what KU has done over the last decade or so. Coach Self, just keep winning titles and rings and let all the rest of them stand around in awe. ROCK CHALK!!!!

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