Looking Ahead At Possible All Big 12 Teams

LAWRENCE, KS - FEBRUARY 01: of the Oklahoma Sooners of the Kansas Jayhawks dring the game on February 1, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kansas. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

With the conference champion now crowned, this seems an opportune time to start the All-League discussion. I'm not trying to pick the 5 best players, but rather, assemble a team that could take the floor. And given what Missouri has done this year, I would be free to take some big liberties, should I be so inclined. But I'm a traditionalist at heart, so I'm sticking to the lineup as much as possible.

1st Team

1 – Tyshawn Taylor

2 – Marcus Denmon

3 – Royce White

4 – Ricardo Ratliffe

5 – Thomas Robinson

2nd Team

1 – Phil Pressey

2 – J'Covan Brown

3 – Kim English

4 – Perry Jones III

5 – Jeff Withey

3rd Team

1 – Pierre Jackson

2 – Keiton Page

3 – Rodney McGruder

4 – Quincy Acy

5 – Romero Osby

All Defensive Team

1 – Phil Pressey

2 – Elijah Johnson

3 – Travis Releford

4 – Ray Turner

5 – Jeff Withey

Player of the Year

Thomas Robinson – A great case can be made for Tyshawn Taylor, and on offense alone, he's probably the pick. But I give the edge to Robinson because of his rebounding. Withey had some nice games and the guards mostly did their part, but Robinson has been the best rebounder in the country. He had off nights shooting the ball, but he always crashed the glass. Suffice it to say, without either one, Kansas isn't anywhere near the top of the league.

Defensive POY

Jeff Withey – A question mark heading into the year, he became the anchor of the league's best defense and led the league in blocks by a wide margin.

Sixth Man of the Year

Michael Dixon – This one was such a runaway that I'm even going to elaborate.

Newcomer of the Year

Royce White – Ditto.

Coach of the Year

Bill Self – I will listen to arguments for Frank Haith, but for my money, it's Self. Haith did a magnificent job turning his unorthodox lineup into a big time winner that has a chance to make a postseason run. But he also inherited a team that returned all but one of its starters. And as luck would have it, the only starter they lost indirectly led them into their unique 4 guard lineup by default. On the other hand, Self lost all but one of his starters. And all he did was turn a bench player into a national POY candidate and win the league outright. He's perennially a candidate, but this might be his best job ever.

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