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Basketball

Niang, McKay receive high Big 12 honors

The following is a press release courtesy of Iowa State athletics communications. 

AMES, Iowa – Iowa State junior Jameel McKay became the first player in school history to be named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and fellow junior Georges Niang became the fourth First-Team All-Big 12 selection of the Fred Hoiberg era. Both Big 12 awards highlighted a successful haul for the Cyclones, as the 2014-15 Phillips 66 All-Big 12 Men’s Basketball Awards were announced by the league today. 

McKay and Niang were joined in earning honors by sophomore guard Monté Morris, who claimed a spot on the second team. McKay was picked for the third team, while his junior college teammate Dustin Hogue was an honorable mention selection. 

*** CLICK HERE for the entire list of Big 12 awards *** 

McKay was also on the Big 12 All-Defensive Team and was a unanimous selection to the Big 12 All-Newcomer Team. McKay’s unanimous inclusion on the newcomer team was the only undivided vote.

Niang, a Methuen, Massachusetts, native, averaged 15.2 points and a career-best 5.4 rebounds during the regular season. He also ranked among the top players in the league in assists (3.4). Niang has scored in double figures 24 times this season, including seven games with 20 or more points. Niang hit 45.3 percent of his 3-pointers in conference play, becoming just the fourth Cyclone to make 25 threes and shoot at least 45 percent in league action.

Niang earned All-Rookie honors in 2013 and was a third-team recipient last season as a sophomore.

Morris has cemented himself as one of the Big 12’s best point guards. The Flint, Michigan, native is leading the league with 5.4 assists per game, while also posting the league’s top assist-to-turnover ratio at 4.6. Morris increased his offensive production to 11.5 points this season, while shooting 51 percent from the floor. Morris also has 51 steals.

McKay became eligible in December after transferring from Marquette and the big man wasted no time in leaving his mark. He averaged 11.3 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.4 blocks. His 50 blocks are third among conference players despite playing just 21 games. McKay finished the season with double-doubles in the final three games and the Milwaukee, Wisconsin, native averaged 15.1 points, 10.0 rebounds and 2.6 blocks since breaking into the starting lineup with eight games left in the regular season.

Hogue averaged 10.1 points and 4.8 rebounds in his second season with the Cyclones. The Yonkers, New York, native shot 57.7 percent from the field and 43.9 percent behind the arc for Iowa State. He joins Kansas’ Perry Ellis as the only players in the Big 12 with 700 points and 400 rebounds the last two seasons.

Hogue, McKay and Morris were all recognized for the first time in their careers.

C

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