Tennessee Volunteers forward Grant Williams is the SEC’s Player of the Year.
The conference revealed all of its awards on Tuesday, but Williams’ honor will of course take center stage. The sophomore star for the Vols enjoyed a terrific year, in which he averaged 15.6 points and 5.8 rebounds per game.
It should come as no surprise that the Vols’ honors didn’t stop there. Rick Barnes was named Coach of the Year, and it’s hard to argue he wasn’t deserving. The Volunteers were picked 13th in the preseason poll and finished as co-regular season champions with the Auburn Tigers. Barnes has always been a great coach, who’s probably gotten a bit more flack than he should’ve. But he certainly proved himself worthy this season.
Freshman of the Year honors were shared by two of the best youngsters in the conference. Collin Sexton of the Alabama Crimson Tide and Kevin Knox of the Kentucky Wildcats will share the award. Sexton and Knox, who figure to be fixtures in the NBA next season, were undoubtedly two of the best freshmen in the country, let alone the conference. So they were certainly deserving of the honor.
We had Co-Sixth Man of the Year honors, as well. Missouri Tigers freshman Jontay Porter and Tennessee’s Lamonte Turner will share the award this year. Jontay, the brother of Michael Porter Jr., played extremely well this season while getting sixth man minutes. The same can be said for Turner for the Vols as well. Porter averaged 9.8 points and 6.8 rebounds on a mark of 24.3 minutes per game, while Turner averaged 10.6 points in 24.5 minutes per game.
Furthermore, we also had Co-Defensive Players of the Year, too. South Carolina Gamecocks forward Chris Silva and Texas A&M Aggies big man Robert Williams were the recipients of the award this season. Silva was one of the best shot-blockers in the conference and one of the best rebounders, as well. Williams proved to be a force as well on the defensive glass and in blocking shots, too.
The All-Conference teams were also revealed to the world on Tuesday. The aforementioned Grant Williams, Knox, and Silva all made the All-SEC First Team. Joining them were some of the best players in the conference. Among the many others were a few seniors, as Chris Chiozza (Florida Gators), Kassius Robertson (Mizzou) Jaylen Barford (Arkansas Razorbacks) and Yante Maten (Georgia Bulldogs) made the cut. In addition, junior Tyler Davis of Texas A&M made the team, as well.
Headlining the All-SEC Second Team was the aforementioned Collin Sexton. He is joined by quite a few other top-tier players, such as Daryl Macon of Arkansas, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of Kentucky and Admiral Schofield of Tennessee. Mississippi State Bulldogs star Quinndary Weatherspoon made the team as well, and so did Vanderbilt Commodores senior Jeff Roberson. A pair of Auburn stars made the cut, as Bryce Brown and Jared Harper are featured on the team.
The All-Freshman Team was also revealed. The aforementioned Sexton, Gilgeous-Alexander, Knox and Porter were among the choices for the team. Joining them are Daniel Gafford of Arkansas, Tremont Waters (LSU Tigers), T.J. Starks of Texas A&M and Nick Weatherspoon of Mississippi State.
Silva, Chiozza and Robert Williams all made it onto the SEC’s All-Defensive Team. Joining those three are Donta Hall of Alabama and Anfernee McLemore of Auburn.