Illini Wrap Up 2006-07 Basketball Season

The 2006-07 college basketball season came to a close last night for the Fighting Illini. Over 800 people gathered at the Holiday Inn for the 85th Men's Basketball Banquet. It was an evening to celebrate Illinois' eighth straight 20-win season (23-13 overall, 9-7 Big Ten) as well as its eighth straight NCAA Tournament appearance.

Seven team awards were presented at the banquet, highlighted by the Most Valuable Player. This year it was a Co-MVP award with Carter and McBride sharing the honor, as voted on by their teammates and coaches. A second-team All-Big Ten and NABC All-District selection, Carter led the Illini in scoring with an average of 13.7 points. He also led the team in 3-point field goal percentage (41.9 percent) and blocked shots (32), while ranking second on the team in rebounds (6.1 rpg). McBride, an honorable mention All-Big Ten choice, was third on the team in scoring (9.6 ppg) while leading the team in minutes (32.0 mpg) and 3-pointers (82) and ranking second in assists (2.3 apg).

In addition to his Co-MVP honor, Carter also received the Ralf Woods Free Throw Trophy for having the Illini's highest free throw percentage in Big Ten play at 74.6 percent (44-59).

Sophomore Chester Frazier and junior Shaun Pruitt received two awards apiece. Frazier was named the Kenny Battle Most Inspirational Player, as voted on by his teammates, as well as the Matt Heldman "Matto" Award, for having the highest point-total of the season in a number of "play-hard" statistics (steals, deflections, charges taken, five-second counts drawn, etc.) Pruitt, meanwhile, was named Most Improved Player, as voted on by the coaches, along with the Rebounder's Award for leading the team in rebounding on the season (261 reb., 7.5 avg.).

Rounding out the awards, junior Brian Randle won the Lou Henson Courage Award, given to the player who takes the most charges and demonstrates the courage, attitude and determination displayed by former Illini coach Lou Henson.

2006-07 Fighting Illini Men's Basketball Awards

Co-Most Valuable Players:
Warren Carter and Rich McBride

Kenny Battle Most Inspirational Player:
Chester Frazier

Matt Heldman "Matto" Award:
Chester Frazier

Most Improved Player:
Shaun Pruitt

Lou Henson Courage Award:
Brian Randle

Ralf Woods Free Throw Award:
Warren Carter

Illini Rebounders Award:
Shaun Pruitt

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