Looks like ESPN College GameDay was memorable for Jay Bilas. The network’s analyst, who was in town last Saturday for UCLA’s win over Arizona, has pegged Bruin point guard Larry Drew II as his choice for Pac-12 Player of the Year.
His full comments, which start at 1:39 in the above video:
This may be a surprise, but UCLA has really come on late in the season. I think Larry Drew II, their point guard, who averaged close to eight assists per game, led the conference in assists, I think he’s the player of the year in that league. He really stabilized that team from the point guard position and led them all season long. Did a really good job on the defensive end, but with his assists, his steals and his leadership ability, go with Larry Drew as the Pac-12 Player of the Year.
As good as Drew has been over the past few weeks, it’s hard to forget his poor shooting through most of the season. He’s on his way to UCLA’s single-season assists record, but the league’s best point guard on the season is ASU freshman Jahii Carson — who averages 17.8 points, 3.3 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game. Earlier this season. UCLA coach Ben Howland compared Carson to former Washington guard Isaiah Thomas.
Conference-leading scorer Allen Crabbe is likely still the favorite for Player of the Year. The Cal guard has cooled off lately with single figures in two of his last three games, but is the most important player on the league’s hottest team. ESPN’s Jason King has Crabbe as his Pac-12 POY, Shabazz Muhammad as his Freshman of the Year, and Drew as his most improved player.