Huth: Penn, Bollant get my vote

Take your pick
Women’s basketball beat writer Jeff Huth submitted his All-Big Ten ballot Sunday. Here’s his take on the top awards:

PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Karisma Penn, Illinois

It will be interesting to see if other voters recognize the senior center’s all-around contributions. If being top five in the conference in scoring, rebounding, blocked shots, field goal percentage and steals doesn’t rate POY, what does?

COACH OF THE YEAR
Matt Bollant, Illinois

Taking over a long-moribund program that last had a winning Big Ten record in 2002-03, the first-year coach wasted no time making Illinois women’s basketball relevant again in the conference and even nationally (just ask Georgia).

FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR
Maggie Lyon, Northwestern

The four-time Big Ten Freshman of the Week is finishing her first collegiate season with a rush. Entering Sunday’s regular season finale, the 6-foot-1 forward had averaged 13.5 points in her last 10 games.

ALL-BIG TEN
First team

— Tayler Hill, Ohio State
— Jordan Hooper, Nebraska
— Maggie Lucas, Penn State
— Lindsey Moore, Nebraska
— Karisma Penn, Illinois
We wish the first team was a pick-six assignment. Penn State’s Alex Bentley is highly deserving, too.
 

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