While Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid grab the majority of the headlines for their NBA Draft stock and Big 12-leading team success, a different player has been selected as the 2013-2014 Big 12 Player of the Year.
Congrats to Melvin Ejim! AP and Coaches Big 12 Player of the Year! pic.twitter.com/rFzbRR1qgK
— Cyclone Basketball (@CycloneMBB) March 10, 2014
Iowa State senior Melvin Ejim has swept both the AP and coaches Player of the Year honors, and frankly, he is extremely deserving. The now 23-year-old forward is considered to be “ancient” by NBA Draft standards, but his on-court play speaks for itself, as he finished 2nd in the Big 12 in both scoring (18.2 points per game) and rebounding (8.6 rebounds per game) in leading the Cyclones to a 23-7 overall mark and a 3rd-place conference finish.
It is a bit of a “controversy” that Ejim was selected over Wiggins in both award races, but while Wiggins has had the more high-profile season (and ended on a huge note with a 40+-point effort), Ejim has been consistently more productive, and that is what both the coaches and media were voting on. No one believes that Ejim will be a better player than Wiggins in 5 years, but that doesn’t stop him from being the Big 12 Player of the Year in 2014.