Jaime Jaquez Jr.’s decision to return for his senior season worked out quite well for No. 2 UCLA.
Jaquez was named The Associated Press player of the year in the Pac-12 and Bruins coach Mick Cronin is the conference coach of the year. Washington forward Keion Brooks was named Pac-12 newcomer of the year by an eight-person panel of journalists who cover the conference.
Jaquez considered leaving Westwood for the NBA after three productive seasons that included a trip the Final Four and the Sweet 16 in consecutive years. The crafty 6-foot-7 swing man had another boxscore-stuffing season in his return, averaging 17.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game while helping lead the Bruins to their first Pac-12 regular-season title in a decade.
Cronin has returned UCLA to prominence in four seasons since leaving Cincinnati. The Bruins had deep NCAA Tournament runs the past two seasons and were the class of the Pac-12 this year.
UCLA went 27-4 overall during the regular season, 18-2 in Pac-12 play and had its first undefeated home season (17-0) since 2006-07. The Bruins have the nation’s longest active home winning streak at 25 games and are the No. 1 seed in the Pac-12 Tournament this week in Las Vegas.
Brooks had an immediate impact at Washington after transferring from Kentucky. The 6-foot-7 forward was third in Pac-12 scoring at 17.8 points per game while grabbing 6.9 rebounds.
u-Guard – Tyger Campbell, UCLA, Sr., 5-11, 180, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Guard – Boogie Ellis, USC, Sr., 6-3, 185, San Diego.
u-Forward – Jaime Jaquez Jr., UCLA, Sr., 6-7, 225, Camarillo, California.
u-Forward – Azuolas Tubelis, Arizona, Jr., 6-11, 245, Vilnius, Lithuania.
Center – Branden Carlson, Utah, Sr., 7-0, 228, South Jordan, Utah.
-“u” denotes unanimous selection.
Guard – Drew Peterson, USC, Sr., 6-9, 205, Libertyville, Illinois.
Guard – Keion Brooks Jr., Washington, Sr., 6-7, 210, Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Forward – Mouhamed Gueye, Washington St., So., 6-11, 210, Dakar, Senegal.
Forward – N’Faly Dante, Oregon, Sr., 6-11, 230, Bamako, Mali.
Center – Oumar Ballo, Arizona, Jr., 7-0, 260, Koulikoro, Mali.
Player of the year – Jaime Jaquez Jr., UCLA.
Coach of the year – Mick Cronin, UCLA.
Newcomer of the year – Keion Brooks, Washington.
All-Pac-12 voting panel: Bruce Pascoe, Arizona Daily Star; Michelle Gardner, Arizona Republic; Paul Klee, Colorado Springs Gazette; Adam Grosbard, Orange County Register; Jon Wilner, San Jose Mercury News; James Crepea, The Oregonian; Pat Rooney, BuffZone.com; Jesse Sowa, Corvallis Gazette-Times.