Georgetown v Marquette

CBT’s Big East postseason awards

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Player of the Year: Jae Crowder, Marquette

Crowder has been absolutely sensational this season. His numbers speak for themselves — 17.6 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 2.4 spg, 36.1% 3PT — but it was his versatility that was even more important. Crowder’s ability to bang with the best of the Big East’s big men in the paint is what allowed the Golden Eagles to be able to play small and overcome the loss of their two best post players.

Coach of the Year: Mike Brey, Notre Dame

What Mike Brey has been able to do with the fighting Irish this season has been nothing short of phenomenal. His team was picked ninth in the Big East in the preseason then lost their best player and their senior leader to a torn acl in December. No matter. Despite playing with a group of youngsters learning new roles, the Irish finished third in the Big East and will be playing in the NCAA Tournament.

Rookie of the Year: Moe Harkless and D’angelo Harrison, St. John’s

Given that a third of the vaunted St. John’s recruiting class was not on the roster and the end of the season and their head coach has spent the year battling prostate cancer, the fact that the Johnnies won six games in the Big East is impressive. These two were the reason why. Harrison averaged 17.0 ppg while Harkless chipped in with 15.0 ppg, 8.4 rpg, 1.5 spg and 1.6 spg. St. John’s will have a bright future … if they can keep them on campus.

Sixth-Man of the Year: Dion Waiters, Syracuse

Waiters is the most talented player on the Syracuse team. I truly believe that. He’s their most dynamic ball-handler and their most dangerous perimeter defender. And he comes off the bench. This pick wasn’t difficult.

Defensive Player of the Year: Fab Melo, Syracuse

Melo’s presence in the middle of the Syracuse zone has been a major reason that the Orange have been this good this season. Think about this for a second: Syracuse has not lost a game with Melo in the lineup, as he missed the Notre Dame game due to academics. He blocks shots, he takes charges and he’s a legitimate seven-footer that takes up a lot of space. Now if he only could rebound on the defensive end of the floor.

All-Big East First Team

POY: Jae Crowder, Sr., Marquette
G: Jason Clark, Sr., Georgetown
G: Darius Johnson-Odom, Sr., Marquette
F: Kris Joseph, Sr., Syracuse
F: Kevin Jones, Sr., West Virginia
C: Jack Cooley, Jr., Notre Dame

All-Big East Second Team

G: Dion Waiters, So., Syracuse
G: Scoop Jardine, Sr., Syracuse
F: Jeremy Lamb, So., UConn
F: Herb Pope, Sr., Seton Hall
C: Gorgui Dieng, So., Louisville

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.

Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament chances take a major blow in loss to No. 16 SMU

SMU guard Nic Moore (11) shoots over Gonzaga forward Kyle Wiltjer (33) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
(AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
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Nic Moore scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and added 11 assists as No. 16 SMU knocked off Gonzaga in Moody Coliseum on Saturday night, 69-60.

The Zags got 20 points and 16 boards from Domantas Sabonis, but Kyle Wiltjer scored just four points and shot 2-for-17 from the floor.

It wasn’t pretty.

And it may have been the end of Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament hopes.

Entering Saturday, the Zags had an RPI in the mid-60s, enough to keep them in the bubble conversation but not enough to make them anything more than a team that will be projected to end up on the cut-line.

The issue is a complete lack of quality wins on their résumé. Gonzaga beat UConn in the Bahamas. That’s a borderline top 50 win. They beat Washington, another borderline top 50 win. Beyond that? They swept Pepperdine, beat Tennessee and own a win over Montana. None of those are top 100 wins, and that’s why the SMU game was such a big deal. The Mustangs are a top 25 team. This was a road game. This win was the kind of thing that the Zags could pin at the top of their profile.

But Wiltjer didn’t show up, the Zags had no answer for Moore and they’ll head back to Spokane needing, in all likelihood, to win the WCC’s automatic bid if they want to dance.

POSTERIZED: Cal’s Jaylen Brown has his dunk contest entry

California's Jaylen Brown lays up a shot against Oregon State in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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Cal picked up a big win over Oregon State in Haas Pavilion on Saturday night, and the exclamation point was this emphatic dunk from Jaylen Brown: