Robinson, Jayhawks Receive More Accolades

March 5, 2012

LAWRENCE, Kan. – National Player of the Year candidate Thomas Robinson has picked up some more hardware, as he was named the AP Big 12 Player of the Year, it was announced Monday, March 5. Robinson was joined by senior guard Tyshawn Taylor as members of the Associated Press All-Big 12 First Team, while junior center Jeff Withey earned honorable mention honors.

The Associated Press All-Big 12 men’s basketball team for the 2011-12 season was chosen by a panel of media representatives who cover the conference on a regular basis.

A junior forward from Washington, D.C., Robinson is the only player in the Big 12 to average a double-double (18.0 ppg, 11.9 rpg) and his 22 double-doubles this year are fourth on the conference single-season list and rank second nationally. Against eight nationally-ranked teams in 2011-12, Robinson averaged 19.8 points and 12.3 rebounds while shooting 55.6 percent. Robinson’s honor is the seventh time that a Kansas men’s basketball athlete has won Big 12 Player of the Year. Robinson joins former Jayhawk greats Raef LaFrentz (1997 and 1998), Drew Gooden (2002), Nick Collison (2003), Wayne Simien (2005) and Marcus Morris (2011) in earning Big 12 Player of the Year honors. It marks the 14th time in school history a Jayhawk has been named his conference’s player of the year. This marks the second Big 12 Player of the Year award for Robinson, as well as being named to the All-Big 12 First Team twice.

The duo becomes the 13th and 14th players during head coach Bill Self’s nine seasons at Kansas to be named All-Big 12 First Team.

Taylor led Kansas this season in conference games with an 18.6 scoring average, while also leading the team in assists at 4.9 per game for the entire season. He is second on the team in overall average at 17.2 points per game. Taylor has now been chosen as a member of the All-Big 12 First Team and AP All-Big 12 First Team.

Withey, from San Diego, Calif., leads the Big 12 in blocked shots with 100, a total that ranks fifth on the conference single-season chart and second on the Kansas list. Sixty-five of those rejections came in league games, setting a Big 12 record for conference play. Withey was also named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year on Sunday, March 4.

No. 3/4 Kansas enters the 2012 Big 12 Championship as the No. 1 seed and will play its quarterfinal game on Thursday, March 8, at 2 p.m. (Central) on ESPN2. KU will face the winner of the No. 8 Texas A&M vs. No. 9 Oklahoma contest which will be played March 7. The event, in which Kansas is two-time defending champ, is being played at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.