NEW YORK - Louisville guard Peyton Siva has been named 2012-13 BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year by a vote of the league’s head coaches. It is the first time a Louisville player has earned BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year honors.
Steven Adams, a 7-0 freshman center from Pittsburgh, was named BIG EAST Preseason Rookie of the Year.
Siva, a 5-11 senior, helped lead Louisville to the NCAA Final Four last year season. He averaged 9.1 points per game and was fourth in the BIG EAST in assists with a 5.6 mark. Siva also led the Cardinals to The BIG EAST Championship title and won the Dave Gavitt Trophy as the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. A native of Seattle, Wash., Siva was named to the NCAA West Regional All-Tournament Team.
Adams is a native of Wellington, New Zealand. He played prep school basketball at Notre Dame Prep in Fitchburg, Mass., last season. Adams was among the top 10 recruits nationally by several national recruiting services.
The 2011-12 Preseason All-BIG EAST Team has two seniors, two juniors and a sophomore. The seniors are Notre Dame’s Jack Cooley and Providence’s Vincent Council. Cooley, the BIG EAST Most Improved Player last season, averaged 12.3 points and 8.9 rebounds. The rugged 6-9 forward helped the Irish to a 21-12 record and 13-5 BIG EAST mark.
Council emerged as an elite BIG EAST player last season. The 6-2 guard averaged a team-leading 15.9 ppg and was first in the league in assists with a 7.5 average. Council also led the BIG EAST in minutes playing, seeing 38.7 minutes of action each game.
The first team also includes Cincinnati’s Sean Kilpatrick, a 6-4 junior from White Plains, N.Y. One of the top shooters in the BIG EAST, Kilpatrick owned a 14.3 scoring average and made a league-high 92 3-point baskets. The other junior on the preseason team is Louisville’s Gorgui Dieng. A 6-10 center from Dakar, Senegal, Dieng led the BIG EAST in blocked shots with a 3.2 average. He also averaged 9.1 points and 9.1 rebounds.
The lone sophomore to earn first-team honors is Georgetown forward Otto Porter. A 6-8 native of Sikeston, Mo., Porter averaged nearly 30 minutes per game as a rookie, though he started only eight games. He averaged 9.7 points and a team-leading 6.8 rebounds.
The Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team includes DePaul junior forward Cleveland Melvin, who is the league’s top returning scorer with a 17.4 scoring average. He also averaged 7.4 rebounds. After Melvin, the second team is backcourt heavy. Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier was the second highest scorer for the Huskies with a 13.0 average. St. John’s guard D’Angelo Harrison was the BIG EAST’s top freshman scorer with a 17.0 average. USF point guard Anthony Collins was the glue behind the Bulls’ breakout season last year. He averaged 9.0 points and 3.4 assists. Syracuse senior guard Brandon Triche offers Syracuse the same stability as Collins. Triche averaged 9.4 points.
The 2012-13 Preseason All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention group includes Louisville forward Chane Behanan, Notre Dame guard Jerian Grant, Pittsburgh guard Tray Woodall and Syracuse forward C.J. Fair.
2012-13 BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year
Peyton Siva, Louisville
2012-13 BIG EAST Preseason Rookie of the Year
Steven Adams, Pittsburgh
2012-13 Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team
Sean Kilpatrick, Cincinnati, G, Jr., 6-4, 221, White Plains, N.Y.
Otto Porter, Georgetown, F, So., 6-8, 205, Sikeston, Mo.
Gorgui Dieng, Louisville, C, Jr., 6-10, 225, Dakar, Senegal
Jack Cooley, Notre Dame, F, Sr., 6-9, 244, Glenview, Ill.
Vincent Council, Providence, G, Sr., 6-2, 180, Brooklyn, N.Y.
2012-13 Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team
Shabazz Napier, Connecticut, G, Jr., 6-1, 171, Roxbury, Mass.
Cleveland Melvin, DePaul, F, Jr., 6-8, 208, Baltimore, Md.
D’Angelo Harrison, St. John’s, G, So., 6-3, 202, Missouri City, Texas
Anthony Collins, USF, So., G, 6-1, 175, Houston, Texas
Brandon Triche, Syracuse, G, Sr., 6-4, 205, Jamesville, N.Y.
2012-13 Preseason BIG EAST Honorable Mention
Chane Behanan, Louisville, F, So., 6-7, 250, Cincinnati, Ohio
Jerian Grant, Notre Dame, G, Jr., 6-5, 185, Bowie, Md.
Tray Woodall, Pittsburgh, G, Sr., 5-11, 190, Brooklyn, N.Y.
C.J. Fair, Syracuse, F, Jr., 6-8, 212, Baltimore, Md.