IOWA CITY, IA - University of Iowa sophomores Aaron Fuller and Matt Gatens and freshman Eric May have earned Big Ten postseason accolades. The Big Ten announced its all-conference teams and individual awards Monday.
Fuller (6-6, 230) and Gatens (6-5, 225) were both named honorable mention all-Big Ten by the league coaches. May (6-5, 225) was named to the league's five-member all-freshman team, which is selected by the conference coaches.
"I'm proud of the recognition that Matt, Aaron and Eric received," said Iowa Head Coach Todd Lickliter. "All three played major roles for our basketball team this season. We are a better team because of their approach and development. All three are underclassmen and have improved from the start of the season. I'm excited about the future."
Fuller played in 29 games with 21 starts, including starting all 18 Big Ten contests. He was slowed by an ankle injury early in the 2009-10 campaign, but regained his form once conference play began in December. Fuller was Iowa's leading scorer (12.3 ppg) and rebounder (7.6 rpg) during league play. The native of Mesa, AZ, ranked first in Big Ten offensive rebounding (3.4) and fifth in rebounding (7.6). Fuller ranks third in the nation in rebounding improvement (+4.3) from non-conference to play to league play.
Gatens is one of three Hawkeyes to start all 31 games. The Iowa City native is Iowa's leading overall scorer (12.4), 3-point (58-of-172) and free throw (83-of-100) shooter. He also ranks second in team assists (101) and steals (27). Gatens ranks third in Big Ten minutes played (36.7) and free throw percentage (.830), ninth in 3-pointers (1.9), and 12th in assists (3.3) and assist/turnover ratio (1.2).
May has started 22 of the last 24 games, including the last 19 as a rookie. The native of Dubuque, IA, ranked first amongst his Big Ten classmates in steals (19), blocks (17) and minutes (34.2), second in rebounding (4.6) and fourth in scoring (9.2), in conference games only. May was Iowa's third leading scorer and led the team in blocks and steals in 18 Big Ten games. In all games, May ranks second in team 3-pointers made (41). The 41 triples rank fourth-best by an Iowa freshman in a single season.
The league coaches named Illinois' D.J. Richardson Freshman of the Year, while the media panel selected Northwestern's Drew Crawford. Richardson, Crawford and May are joined on the all-freshman team by Indiana's Christian Watford and Purdue's Kelsey Barlow. Richardson, Watford and Crawford were unanimous selections.
Junior center Jarryd Cole (6-7, 250) was also honored as part of the Big Ten all-conference teams, earning Iowa's Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. One member of each Big Ten team is recognized with the Sportsmanship Award at the conclusion of each season. Cole started all 31 games, averaging 8.2 points and 5.1 rebounds per contest.
Ohio State's Evan Turner was selected by the coaches and media as the Player of the Year (unanimously by the media). The coaches named Purdue's Matt Painter Coach of the Year, while the media voted the award to Thad Matta of Ohio State.
Conference coaches selected Purdue's Chris Kramer as Defensive Player of the Year and Draymond Green of Michigan State was a unanimous choice as Sixth Man of the Year.
The coaches and media agreed on the all-Big Ten first and second teams. Representing the first team is Illinois' Demetri McCamey, Michigan State's Kalin Lucas, Evan Turner of Ohio State and Purdue's Robbie Hummel and E'Twaun Moore. The second team featured Michigan's DeShawn Sims, Northwestern's John Shurna, Penn State's Talor Battle, Purdue's JaJuan Johnson and Trevon Hughes of Wisconsin.
The coaches' third team consisted of Michigan's Manny Harris, Draymond Green and Raymar Morgan of Michigan State, Ohio State's William Buford and Wisconsin's Jason Bohannon. The media honored Harris, Green, Buford, Bohannon and Ohio State's David Lighty on its third team.
The coaches' all-defensive team featured Northwestern's Jeremy Nash, Ohio State's Dallas Lauderdale, Wisconsin's Trevon Hughes and JaJuan Johnson and Chris Kramer of Purdue.