Cat Barber, Fred VanVleet missing from list of Cousy Award finalists

Nic Moore is certainly deserving. SMU is having an outstanding season. (USATSI)

The 10 finalists for the Bob Cousy Point Guard of the Year Award have been released. Before we get to those names, let’s first realize that two players who are deserving of being on the list were not placed there.

Glaringly absent: NC State’s Cat Barber and Wichita State’s Fred VanVleet. The former is averaging 23.1 points, 4.6 assists and 4.6 rebounds and is certainly on pace to be an All-ACC First Team selectee. He’s perhaps hindered by the fact his team is just 12-10 overall and 2-7 in the league.

VanVleet, who just put up 32 points on Sunday in Wichita State’s biggest conference game of the season (a 78-65 road victory against Evansville), is averaging 13.4 points, 5.3 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 1.8 steals. Also, Wichita State is 16-2 with VanVleet in the lineup. The Shockers are undefeated in Missouri Valley play.

So, who is on the list, then? Here they are

2016 Bob Cousy Award Finalists

Kyle Collinsworth, Brigham Young University

Yogi Ferrell, Indiana

Monte Morris, Iowa State

Tyler Ulis, Kentucky

Melo Trimble, Maryland

Demetrius Jackson, Notre Dame

Kay Felder, Oakland

Gary Payton II, Oregon State

Kris Dunn, Providence

Nic Moore, SMU

It’s a solid list, all things considered. Dunn (17.4 points, 6.9 assists, 6.1 rebounds, 3.2 steals) is absolutely the frontrunner at this point, with Trimble, Ulis, Morris and Ferrell realistically comprising the top five. Of course, if you’re going to put two on, you have to take two off. In my opinion, Kyle Collinsworth and Demetrius Jackson are reasonable swaps for Barber and VanVleet.

The Cousy Award is handled by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame committee. When we get to early March, the list will be narrowed to five. Utah’s Delon Wright won the award last season; UConn’s Shabazz Napier, Michigan’s Trey Burke, North Carolina’s Kendall Marshall and UConn’s Kemba Walker in the four years prior to that.

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