Monday, January 30, 2012

January 2012 Awards + Player/Coach of the Year Semi-Finalists

Player of the Month

Ricky Rubio, Minnesota Timberwolves

After a disappointing 0-3 start in December, the Wolves went 10-8 in January. How long has it been since the Wolves had a winning month? I don't know, so let's just say, A long freakin' time.

And after coming off the bench for the 1st 2 1/2 weeks, Ricky Rubio joined the Wolves starting lineup on January 13 at New Orleans, a game the Wolves won 87-80. In fact, after winning 3 of their 1st 10 games, the Wolves are 7-4 with Rubio in the starting lineup. Coincidence? Ain't no such thing.

Now, at the end of his 1st full month in the NBA, Rubio is the Wolves #4 scorer with 11 ppg. He is, of course, their assist leader at 9 apg. He is even #3 in rebounds with 5. He leads in steals with 2 and turnovers with 3. He is shooting 38 percent--aha! Could be better! Could be better. He is, by consensus, the NBA's rookie of the month and probably rookie of the year.

And if the Wolves win 7 of 11 the rest of the way, they'll be about 39-27. I had figured that a 33 winning percentage would represent an acceptable rate of progress. Instead we're lookin' at 59 percent. Or even if we just go 10-11 every month, we'll be 31-35 or 47 percent. And Rubio (along with coach Rick Adelman) is the #1 reason for the improvement.

Runners-up: Joey King, Eastview boys; Kevin Love, Minnesota Timberwolves

Team of the Month

Eastview boys

Eastview had probably the best week any boys team has ever had 3 weeks ago, beating the #3 and #4 teams in the state--on the road, no less--just 3 days apart. Then, on the 4th day, instead of resting, they travelled to Wisconsin to play the undefeated defending state champion Madison Memorial and just smoked 'em 64-37.

They've been somewhat less dramatic of late, but remain unbeaten and rated #1 into February.

Runners-Up: St. Thomas women, Hopkins girls

Coach of the Month

Tubby Smith, Minnesota Gopher men

After losing Trevor Mbakwe and a disastrous 0-4 start in the Big 10, the Gophers have rallied, winning 4 of 5, including the big upset at Indiana and the revenge game against Illinois. Tubby has pulled a lot of strings. Some have worked and some have not. But 4-5, after that 0-4? Nobody thought it possible. Fans are even thinking NCAA tournament again. Another 4-1 streak would be nice, but even another 4-and-5 would get 'em to 8-10 and 20-11. I suppose that's "on the bubble," but barring too darn many upsets in the mid-major tournaments, I think it qualifies.

Runners-up: Rick Adelman, Minnesota Timberwolves; Mark Gerber, Eastview boys

Game of the Month

Prairie Seeds boys 165 Math & Science Academy 37

An all-time record for points by a Minnesota high school.


Minnesota Gopher men 77 Indiana 74
Eastview boys 64 Madison Memorial 37

January  All-Stars

Ricky Rubio, Minnesota Timberwolves

Joey King, Eastview boys
Kevin Love, Minnesota Timberwolves
Nia Coffey, Hopkins girls
Katybeth Biewen, Edina girls

2nd Team

Sean Scott, Spring Lake Park boys
Seth Anderson, Gustavus men
Rachel Banham, Minnesota Gopher women
Joe Coleman, Minnesota Gopher men
Taylor Sheley, Bethel women

3rd Team

Tessa Cichy, Hill-Murray girls
Siyani Chambers, Hopkins boys
Kiara Buford, Minnesota Gopher women
Rebekah Dahlman, Braham girls
Johnny Woodard, Duluth East boys

4th Team

Tyler Flack, Lakeville North boys
Andy Grzesiak-Grimm, Augsburg men
Taylor Stafford, Duluth East boy
Jake Hottenstine, UMD men
Serenae Levine, Augsburg women

Team of the Month

1. Eastview boys
2. St. Thomas women
3. Hopkins girls
4. Winona State men
5. Minnesota Timberwolves

6. Hopkins boys

7. Gustavus men
8. Minnesota Gopher men
9. St. Thomas men
10. Eden Prairie girls

11. Minnesota Gopher women
12. Lakeville North boys
13. Braham girls
14. Mpls. Washburn boys

15. Edina girls

The "Cooling Off Award" (among the teams of the month/year earlier but no more)

Moorhead State men
Bethel women

Coach of the Month

1. Tubby Smith, Minnesota Gopher men
2. Rick Adelman, Minnesota Timberwolves
3. Mark Gerber, Eastview boys
4. Ruth Sinn, St. Thomas women
5. Mike Leaf, Winona State men

6. Matt Nilsen, Edina girls
7. Mark Hanson, Gustavus men
8. Dan Elhard, Grand Rapids boys

9. Chris Carr, Eden Prairie girls
10. Reggie Perkins, Mpls. Washburn boys

11. John Oxton, Lakeville North boys

12. Chad Walthall, Moorhead State men
13. Aaron Griess, Augsburg men
14. Pam Borton, Minnesota Gopher women
15. Dave Stromme, St. Olaf women

16. Greg Slaathaug, Fulda girls
17. Scot Sorenson, Buffalo girls
18. Markus Okeson, Redwood Valley boys
19. John Herbrechtsmayer, Bethel women
20. Annette Wiles, UMD women

The Big Game (of the Month)

1. Prairie Seeds boys 165 Math & Science Academy 37
2. Minnesota Gopher men 77 Indiana 74
3. Eastview boys 64 Madison Memorial 37
4. Minnesota Gopher women 76 Ohio State 65

5 (tie). Minnesota Timberwolves 99 Dallas Mavericks 82
     Minnesota Timberwolves 105 Dallas Mavericks 80

7. Eastview boys 91 Apple Valley 84
8. Gustavus men 82 St. Thomas 77
9. UMD men 101 Augustana 99
10. Duluth East boys 86 Rice Lake (WI) 71

11. Minnesota Gopher women 71 Michigan State 65

12. Eastview boys 54 Lakeville North 48
13. Bloomington Kennedy girls 56 Lakeville North 47
14. Mpls. Washburn boys 78 Eden Prairie 74
15. Minnesota Gopher women 84 Indiana 43
16. Braham girls 56 Esko 54

17. Duluth Denfeld 100 Duluth East 99 (OT)
18. Duluth East boys 63 Mpls. Washburn 62
19. Minnesota Gopher men 80 Penn State 66

20. St. Thomas women 68 Bethel 66

21. St. Thomas men 78 St. Olaf 77
22. Bethel men 69 St. Thomas 68
23. Augsburg men 57 St. Olaf 55

24 (tie). Minnesota Gopher women 68 Northwestern 60
     Minnesota Gopher men 75 Northwestern 52

November-December-January Awards

Player of the Year Candidates

1. Don't forget about Lindsay Whalen, Minnesota Lynx. The way I see it, the summer 2011 is part of the 2011-2012 season

2. Ricky Rubio, Minnesota Timberwolves
3. Kevin Love, Minnesota Timberwolves
4. Joey King, Eastview boys
5. Nia Coffey, Hopkins girls

6. Rachel Banham, Minnesota Gopher women
7. Trevor Mbakwe, Minnesota Gopher men--not gonna be PoY, but he was that good when he was out there
8. Tyus Jones, Apple Valley boys
9. Seth Anderson, Gustavus men
10. Taylor Sheley, Bethel women

11. Kiara Buford, Minnesota Gopher women
12. Rebekah Dahlman, Braham girls
13 (tie). Katybeth Biewen, Edina girls
     Shayne Mullaney, Eden Prairie girls
15. Sean Scott, Spring Lake Park boys

16. Clayton Vette, Winona State men
17. D.J. Hamilton, Moorhead State men
18. Brittani Wiese, UM-Crookston women
19. Jackie Johnson, Eden Prairie girls
20. Siyani Chambers, Hopkins boys

21. Taylor Stafford, Duluth East boys
22. Tessa Cichy, Hill-Murray girls
23. Joe Coleman, Minnesota Gopher men
24. Jake Hottenstine, UM-Duluth
25. Julian Welch, Minnesota Gopher men

26. Bobby Fong, St. Olaf men
27. Angie Jetvig, Moorhead State women
28. Katie Loberg, Minnesota Gopher women
29. Johnny Woodard, Duluth East boys
30. Tyler Schmidt, Augsburg men

Coach of the Year Candidates

1. Rick Adelman, Minnesota Timberwolves
2. Cheryl Reeve, Minnesota Lynx
3. Billy McKee, Augsburg women
4. Mark Gerber, Eastview boys
5. Tubby Smith, Minnesota Gopher men

6. Brian Cosgriff, Hopkins girls
7. Mike Leaf, Winona State men
8. Aaron Greiss, Augsburg men
9. Mike Roysland, UM-Crookston women
10. Ruth Sinn, St. Thomas women

11. Kenny Novak, Jr., Hopkins boys
12. Mark Hanson, Gustavus men
13. Johnny Tauer, St. Thomas men
14. Reggie Perkins, Mpls. Washburn boys
15. Dan Kosmoski, St. Olaf men

16. Chad Walthall, Moorhead State men
17. Chris Carr, Eden Prairie girls
18. John Herbrechtsmayer, Bethel women
19. Dan Elhard, Grand Rapids boys
20. Jeremy Post, White Bear Lake girls

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