In a two-man race for the Pac-12 men’s basketball Player of the Year award, Husky star Terrell Brown Jr. fell short to his former Arizona teammate Bennedict Mathurin, who captured the league’s top postseason prize.
As a consolation, league coaches voted Brown to the All-Pac-12 first team along with nine other players.
Brown, who led the Pac-12 in scoring (21.7 points per game), steals (2.1) and was fourth in assists (4.2), is the only player on a team that finished outside the top four in the league standings to garner all-conference first-team honors.
Mathurin, Christian Koloko, who was chosen the league’s defensive player of the year and most improved player, and Azuolas Tubelis represented Pac-12 regular-season champion Arizona.
UCLA also tied with the most all-conference first-team selections, including Tyger Campbell, Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Johnny Juzang, while USC had Isaiah Mobley and Drew Peterson. Colorado’s Jabari Walker rounded out the list.
Accross the state, WSU senior guard Michael Flowers earned second-team All-Pac-12 honors while Cougar forward Mouhamed Gueye was named to the All-Pac-12 freshman team.
“Doesn’t mean nothing without my brothers who helped me!!!!” tweeted Brown, the Arizona transfer who was the only Husky recognized after leading UW to a 16-14 record and fifth-place tie in the Pac-12 at 11-9.
In his first year, Arizona’s Tommy Lloyd captured the Pac-12 Coach of the Year award after guiding the Wildcats to a 28-3 record and first in the conference at 18-2, which is the most league wins in Pac-12 history.
Stanford’s Harrison Ingram won the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year award while Arizona’s Pelle Larsson collected the league’s Sixth Player of the Year honors.
Mathurin finished a distant second in the Pac-12 in scoring race (17.3 ppg.), which seemingly opened the door for Brown to become the first Husky since Jaylen Nowell in 2019 to win the conference’s POW award.
“He led the league in steals, he led the league in scoring (and) he’s second or third in terms of analytics and being the most efficient player in the league,” UW coach Mike Hopkins said. “He was a big part of a team that won five games last year and came in last place in the league. We were preseason No. 11 and we went to (tied for fifth). That’s a big jump for most leagues.
“People always say the player of the year is the player that wins the most. Maybe he has not won the most, but he’s made the biggest difference. … I don’t think there’s a more valuable player to a team than Terrell Brown.”
Hopkins also lobbied for Emmitt Matthews Jr., Daejon Davis, Nate Roberts, PJ Fuller and Cole Bajema to receive all-conference recognition, but they were shut out.
“Usually those honors go to the top 1-2 teams in the league based on their record,” Hopkins said. “Good for them. We love our guys. We love our team.”
Still, the Huskies took notice at the so-called snub.
“Not even honorable mention,” Matthews tweeted.
In a tweet, Davis replied: “We know they have their favorites teams … especially now because apparently only 2 teams in our league play defense. … A team with three players top 5 in steals and not one gets the all defensive nod.”