SEC Honors Green, Releford, Mitchell
What is a surprise is that Billy Donovan was named SEC Coach of the Year for the first time this year. And it came in a season in which Anthony Grant of Alabama seemed to be a shoo-in for the honor.
Back in the pre-season, Florida was the unanimous selection to win this year's SEC Championship, which the Gators have done with a 13-3 record. Florida returned five starters from an NCAA team in 2010. No one expected coaching to cost the Gators. After all, Donovan has twice coached Florida to national championships.
The question then becomes: Why haven't SEC coaches previously selected Donovan as SEC Coach of the Year? Donovan has led the Gators to two national championships. He has the third most wins by an SEC coach with 355, trailing only Kentucky's Adolph Rupp (876) and LSU's Dale Brown (448).
When the Gators were selected to win the 2011 SEC championship, Alabama was picked ninth of the 12 teams.
So what did Grant do? He coached Alabama to a 12-4 record, easily the second best mark in the SEC, one win away from a co-championship with Florida.
That's some coaching job that is going unrewarded, at least by the SEC coaches.
In other selections by the SEC coaches, Florida senior forward Chandler Parsons is Player of the Year, Kentucky's Terrence Jones Freshman of the Year, Riley Benock of Mississippi State Scholar-Athlete, Sam Mudrow of South Carolina Defensive Player, and Brian Williams of Tennessee Sixth Man.
P a r s o n s led F l o r i d a t o a 2 4 - 6 s e a s o n . H e b e c o m e s t h e f i r s t F l o r i d a p l a y e r t o b e n a m e d S E C P l a y e r o f t h e Y e a r b y t h e l e a g u e' s c o a c h e s . T h e v e r s a t i l e s e n i o r a v e r a g e s 1 1 . 4 p o i n t s , 7 . 8 r e b o u n d s , 3 . 6 a s s i s t s a n d 1 . 0 s t e a l s p e r g a m e .
Alabama did get a little recognition. JaMychal Green, a 6-8, 228-pound junior from Montgomery, was first team All-SEC as the coaches voted eight-member teams for first and second team All-SEC and Freshman All-SEC and a five-man defensive team.
Tony Mitchell, a 6-6, 210-pound sophomore from Swainsboro, Ga., was second team.
Alabama's starting point guard, Trevor Releford, 6-1, 180, from Shawnee Mission, Kan., was named to the Freshman All-SEC team.
In the "Go Figure" Department, the SEC coaches did not select one Alabama player to the All-SEC Defensive Team. Alabama leads the SEC in scoring defense, field goal percentage defense, and steals. Individually in steals, Tony Mitchell ranks second in the SEC, Senario Hillman third, Chris Hines seventh, Trevor Releford ninth, and JaMychal Green 11th. In blocked shots, Green is fifth, Hines ninth, and Mitchell 13th.
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