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Monte Morris named Big 12 preseason player of the year

Senior is conference's top returning scorer

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Gazette staff

Expectations are obviously high for Iowa State point guard Monte Morris entering his senior year. They were cemented Thursday with the announcement from the Big 12 that he is the league’s preseason player of the year.

Morris, the top returning scorer in the Big 12 (13.8) is also the only unanimous preseason first-team all-conference choice.

The Flint, Mich., native is a two-time second-team all-Big 12 pick by the coaches. He led the league in assists (6.9) last season as the second-leading scorer for an ISU team that went 23-12 and reached the Sweet 16.

Morris is the second Cyclone to receive the preseason honor, joining Jamaal Tinsley (2000-01). Tinsley ended up earning the postseason award that year as well.

Morris shot 48.7 percent from the field in 2015-16, including 35.8 percent from 3-point range. His assist-to-turnover ratio (4.23) ranked third in the country.

Other preseason first-team all-Big 12 picks include Devonte’ Graham and Frank Mason III of Kansas, Johnathan Motley of Baylor and Oklahoma State’s Jawun Evans.

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