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Predicting the Big 12 Conference Basketball Team Awards for 2020-21 Season

NCAA Basketball: Oklahoma State at Texas Tech

We are crossing the halfway mark of the Big 12 Conference league schedule and it seems like the right time to share my predictions for awards. On Wednesday, I shared my thoughts on the Big 12 individual awards, so today, I’ll share my predictions for the team awards. Here we go.

First Team

G Jared Butler, Baylor

G Mac McClung, Texas Tech

G MaCio Teague, Baylor

G Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State

F Derek Culver, West Virginia

Notes: Butler is here because player of the year is on the first team. McClung and Cunningham deserve recognition here, too, though I could see some voters sliding the latter to second team to give recognition to someone like Texas G Andrew Jones. Teague could end up flipping out for Mitchell, as the latter was on a hot streak as February began. This will be a four-guard first-team, with Culver filling out the first team as its only forward. By season’s end he should lead the Big 12 in double-doubles and will likely flirt with the NBA.


Second Team

G Andrew Jones, Texas

G Matt Coleman III, Texas

G Miles McBride, West Virginia

G Davion Mitchell, Baylor

F David McCormack, Kansas

Notes: Texas gets double recognition here with Jones and Coleman. Both are first-team talent, but with Baylor’s season I suspect they’ll end up with second-team recognition. I had Mitchell on the third team at first, but his recent play bumps him into second-team territory and I’m projecting him to stay there. McBride is one of the league’s rising stars and, assuming the NBA defections after this season, he will be one of the league’s star guards in 2021-22. McCormack is the softest projection here. I think the voters will want to recognize a forward here. McCormack, with his improvement this season and the Jayhawk pedigree, probably makes him the most likely choice.

Third Team

G DeVion Harmon, Oklahoma

G Austin Reaves, Oklahoma

G Isaac Likekele, Oklahoma State

G Taz Sherman, West Virginia

F Terrence Shannon Jr., Texas Tech

Notes: This is where the decisions get tricky. Mitchell and Reaves deserve spots. Likekele is one of the best guards in the league that we don’t talk about enough. Sherman should trigger his extra year of eligibility and come back to be a star in 2021-22. Shannon, as the sixth man, will probably merit a third-team mention. The Big 12 is so deep I had a list of about 12 players that could fit here. The one I felt the worst about leaving off was Kansas guard Ochai Agbaji. A strong finish could slot him into third team.

Freshman Team

G Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State

G Mike Miles, TCU

G Jalen Wilson, Kansas

G Nijel Pack, Kansas State

F Greg Brown, Texas

Notes: Cunningham, obviously. Miles is the future of the Horned Frogs and had a great season as a true freshman. Wilson had fits and starts as a redshirt freshman, but he’s worthy of inclusion. So is Pack, who was the best part of the Wildcats’ large 2020 recruiting class. After that we catch Brown, the talented Texas forward who, in another season, might have made one of the top three teams or even been the Freshman of the Year.


Defensive Team

G Davion Mitchell, Baylor

G Marcus Garrett, Kansas

G Mark Vital, Baylor

F Kevin McCullar, Texas Tech

F Kai Jones, Texas

Notes: Mitchell tops the list here. Garrett hasn’t had his best season defensively, but he’s been good enough to make this list. Same goes for Vital. McCullar and Jones have emerged as quality defenders. Don’t be surprised if a player like Likekele or Texas Tech’s Marcos Santos-Silva slips into this list.

Newcomer Team (non-freshman)

G Mac McClung, Texas Tech

G Umoja Gibson, Oklahoma

G Adam Flagler, Baylor

F Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua, Baylor

F Marcos Santos-Silva, Texas Tech

Notes: McClung, as Newcomer of the Year, takes a spot here. Flagler and Tchamwa Tchatchoua redshirted last year and were worth the wait. Gibson and Santos-Silva were transfers and made immediate impacts. Watch Oklahoma’s Elijah Harkless. He’ll make a late run at this team.

You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard. Send him a tweet with your question to be included in this week’s Big 12 Basketball Mailbag, which appears each Friday during the conference season.

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