The 10 finalists for the Bob Cousy award were released this afternoon. They are, in alphabetical order:
- Norris Cole, Cleveland State
- Corey Fisher, Villanova
- Jimmer Fredette, BYU
- D.J. Gay, San Diego State
- Brandon Knight, Kentucky
- Demetri McCamey, Illinois
- Mickey McConnell, St. Mary’s
- Nolan Smith, Duke
- Isaiah Thomas, Washington
- Kemba Walker, UConn
They are all good players, there’s no question about that. In fact, three of the four favorites for national player of the year are on this list — Jimmer Fredette, Kemba Walker, and Nolan Smith.
That said, there are two notable names missing: Jordan Taylor of Wisconsin and Tu Holloway of Xavier.
With all due respect to everyone on that list, there really is no excuse for Taylor and Holloway to be left out. In fact, after Fredette, Walker, and Smith, I’d say that Holloway and Taylor have been the two best point guards in the country this season.
There are currently four players averaging 20.0 ppg and 5.0 apg — Norris Cole, Smith, Charles Jenkins of Hofstra (who has a legitimate argument to be included on this list as well), and Holloway. His play this season has been the biggest reason that Xavier is currently tied for first place in the Atlantic 10. He’s filled the scoring void left by Jordan Crawford and put an injury-depleted Musketeer team on his back.
As good as Holloway has been this season, Taylor has been better. He’s the model of efficiency when it comes to playing the point. His averages of 17.8 ppg, 4.6 apg, and 4.4 rpg are all the more impressive when you consider that Wisconsin averages the fewest possessions of any team in the country. Wisconsin isn’t just the slowest team in the country, they are the most efficient in large part dude to the fact that they turn the ball over less than eight times per game. Taylor leads the way in that department as well, turning the ball over just 25 times despite playing 35.5 mpg as the team’s primary ball handler.
I’m not saying that either of these two points guards are the best in the country. That argument isn’t possible, not with Fredette, Walker, and Smith eligible.
But there is no way that they are not among the top 10 point guards in the country.
And its a shame they aren’t being given the credit they deserve.