NEW YORK – Doug McDermott was named First Team All-Conference for the fourth year in a row, and Ethan Wragge earned Honorable-Mention acclaim as the BIG EAST released its All-Conference honors on Sunday morning.
McDermott, Providence guard Bryce Cotton and Xavier guard Semaj Christon were unanimous picks, which is voted on by league head coaches. The coaches are not permitted to vote for their own players. The league announced the All-BIG EAST First and Second Teams, Honorable Mention and the BIG EAST All-Rookie Team.
The BIG EAST Player of the Year will come from the All-BIG EAST First Team. The conference will announce Player of the Year, BIG EAST Coach of the Year, BIG EAST Rookie of the Year and the BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete of the Year on Wednesday, March 12. The announcement will be made on the first day of The BIG EAST Championship Presented by NEW YORK LIFE at Madison Square Garden at 4:30 p.m. ET. The other league individual awards will be announced Monday, March 10.
In addition to McDermott, Cotton and Christon, Markel Starks of Georgetown, D’Angelo Harrison of St. John’s and James Bell of Villanova were named to the first team.
McDermott, a 6-8 senior, led the BIG EAST in scoring in all games (26.5) and in BIG EAST play (27.7). In the regular-season finale against Providence, McDermott scored a career-high 45 points and became the eighth player in college basketball history to surpass 3,000 career points. He shot 52.2 percent from the floor, 44.7 percent from 3-point range and 86.7 percent from the foul line and posted a 7.2 rebound average. This is the fourth straight first-team all-conference honor for McDermott, who earned similar honors in the Missouri Valley Conference the previous three seasons.
Cotton, a 6-1 senior, is the only repeat selection on the All-BIG EAST First Team. The Friar guard was second to McDermott in scoring in all games (21.7) and in league play (23.4). He became the BIG EAST assist champion with a 6.1 average in league contests. A Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team pick, he leads the nation in minutes played, averaging 40.1 minutes.
Christon helped Xavier to a No. 3 seed in The BIG EAST Tournament and a 20-11 overall record. The versatile 6-3 sophomore averaged 17.0 points, 4.1 assists and 1.4 steals. He was a 2013-14 Preseason All-BIG EAST selection.
Starks, a 6-2 senior, was Georgetown’s backcourt leader. His 17.1 scoring average in all games ranks fourth in the BIG EAST. Like Xavier’s Christon, Starks was a 2013-14 Preseason All-BIG EAST pick.
Harrison, a 6-4 junior, led a St. John’s charge in the second half of the season that carried the Red Storm to a 10-8 BIG EAST record after an 0-5 start and a No. 5 seed at The BIG EAST Tournament. Harrison averaged 17.6 points, which ranks third in the conference.
Bell was a primary catalyst behind Villanova’s first-place finish in the regular season. He averaged 14.9 points and 6.0 rebounds. The 6-6 senior helped the Wildcats, 28-3 overall and 16-2 in conference play, to the most regular-season wins and BIG EAST victories in school history.
The All-BIG EAST Second Team includes six members because of a tie in the voting. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera of Georgetown was the highest scorer in the group, averaging 16.8 points, which is sixth in the BIG EAST.
Butler’s Kellen Dunham was right behind Smith-Rivera, ranking seventh and scoring at 16.8 clip. Seton Hall’s Fuquan Edwin was an all-around performer on the wing, averaging 14.7 points and a league-leading 2.8 steals. Marquette’s Davante Gardner and Providence’s Kadeem Batts were productive frontcourt performers. Gardner led the Golden Eagles with a 15.1 scoring average and a 6.1 rebounding mark. Batts averaged 12.6 points and a team-leading 7.7 rebounds for the Friars.
Wragge was among four men to earn honorable-mention status after leading the league in three-pointers (96) and three-point percentage (.478). He averaged 10.7 points per game and gained national attention when he tied a Creighton single-game record nine three-pointers in a 96-68 win at No. 4 Villanova on Jan. 20th.
The BIG EAST Rookie of the Year will come from the BIG EAST All-Rookie Team. For rookie honors, the coaches included two players from DePaul, Billy Garrett, Jr., and Tommy Hamilton IV. Butler’s Andrew Chrabascz, Marquette’s Deonte Burton, St. John’s Rysheed Jordan, and Villanova’s Josh Hart made the squad.
Garrett, Jr. is the top rookie scorer in the BIG EAST with a 12.4 scoring average. Hamilton IV is the leading freshman rebounder with a 5.0 mark. Jordan, the Preseason BIG EAST Rookie of the Year, has averaged 9.4 points and 4.1 assists. Chrabascz and Burton saw their playing time increase as the season progressed. Chrabascz averaged 6.2 points and Burton averaged 6.4 points.