WACO, Texas — Baylor junior guard Jared Butler has been named Associated Press Big 12 Player of the Year, becoming the first player in program history to win the Big 12’s top individual honor, the AP announced Tuesday.
The AP All-Big 12 awards also recognized Scott Drew as Big 12 Coach of the Year for a second-consecutive season, while MaCio Teague and Davion Mitchell earned All-Big 12 Second Team honors. Combined with Butler’s AP All-Big 12 First-Team selection, the Bears had three players among 10 honored by the league’s media.
Butler joins Terry Teagle (1980) and David Wesley (1992) to give the Bears three conference Player of the Year honorees. Teagle and Wesley won their awards in the Southwest Conference.
Butler and Mitchell were tabbed Sporting News All-Americans earlier Tuesday, with Butler picking up First Team honors and Mitchell named to the Third Team.
A Reserve, La., native, Butler leads the Big 12 in steals (2.1/game), 3-point percentage (.444), and 3-pointers made (2.73/game). He ranks second in the conference in assists (5.0/game), third in scoring (17.1/game), third in field goal percentage (.493) and seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.76). Butler’s 3-point percentage (.444) ranks sixth nationally, while he’s 25th nationally in steals (2.1/game) and 49th in assists (5.0/game).
Mitchell, a Hinesville, Ga., native, leads the Big 12 in assists (5.7/game) and field goal percentage (.516), ranks second in steals (1.9/game), second in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.27), fifth in 3-pointers made (2.3/game), 12th in scoring (13.8/game) and 15th in minutes played (32.5/game). His numbers were even better in Big 12 Conference play, where he led the league in 3-point percentage (.449), ranked third in 3-pointers made (2.5/game), fifth in minutes played (34.8/game) and ninth in scoring (15.4/game).
Teague finished the regular season second on the team and sixth in the Big 12 with 15.8 points per game, which increased to 16.1 in Big 12 play. The Cincinnati, Ohio, native is shooting 40% from 3-point range and averaging 4.1 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 31.2 minutes per game. Teague ranks fifth in the Big 12 with a .481 field goal percentage and 12th with 2.0 made 3-pointers per game.
BU finished the regular season ranked No. 2 nationally with a 21-1 record and a 13-1 mark in conference play. The Bears won more games than any other team in the league despite having four games canceled, while TCU with two cancellations was the only other program to not play at least 17 league games.
No. 1 seed Baylor returns to action at 1:30 p.m. CT Thursday on ESPN2 in the Big 12 Championship quarterfinals against the winner of the first round game between No. 8 seed TCU and No. 9 seed Kansas State. The winner of that game will face the winner of No. 4 West Virginia vs. No. 5 Oklahoma State at 5:30 p.m. CT Friday.
2021 AP ALL-BIG 12 AWARDS
Coach of the Year: Scott Drew, Baylor
Player of the Year: Jared Butler, Baylor
Freshman of the Year: Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State
Jared Butler, Baylor*
Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma State*
Derek Culver, West Virginia
Mac McClung, Texas Tech
Austin Reaves, Oklahoma
Andrew Jones, Texas
Miles McBride, West Virginia
David McCormack, Kansas
Davion Mitchell, Baylor
MaCio Teague, Baylor