As former Indiana star Victor Oladipo continues to see his name skyrocket up draft boards in preparation for this month’s NBA Draft, he is also continuing to rack up quite the mantle full of trophies for his tremendous junior season.
Besides leading Indiana to a stellar season that included being ranked No. 1 and winning it’s first outright Big Ten regular season championship since 1993, Oladipo was named the Big Ten’s defensive player of the year and also received player of the year honors from The Sporting News — among other awards.
Oladipo can now also add the Eddie Sutton Tustenugee Award to his list of accomplishments, and while awards like this are subject to certain criteria, it appears based on the description of the award from Tulsa World, that it fits the Indiana junior guard perfectly.
The Eddie Sutton Tustenugee Award is presented annually to a college basketball player who best exhibits the traits of tenacity and unselfishness that Sutton advocated during a coaching career that landed him in the College Basketball Hall of Fame. In the language of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation – one of the Five Civilized Tribes that settled in Oklahoma – “tustenugee” means “warrior.”
Said Tulsa Sports Charities director Tommy Thompson in a release which accompanied the announcement: “Victor Oladipo certainly performed like a warrior last season. He played defense with a relentless and persistent passion, the true embodiment of an Eddie Sutton warrior.”
Sutton — one of the most successful coaches in college basketball history and one of only eight coaches to surpass 800 wins — would have probably enjoyed coaching a player like Victor Oladipo, so the award seems to have gone to the right player this season.