Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan was named Big Ten Coach of the Year and senior guard Kirk Penney was a unanimous first-team All-Big Ten selection, the Big Ten announced Wednesday. Ryan, who became the first UW coach ever to earn coach of the year honors last season, is just the fourth Big Ten coach to win the award in consecutive seasons and the first to win it in each of his first two years. Penney is just the third Badger to earn first-team all-conference honors in consecutive seasons, the first since Ab Nicholas in 1951-52.
"This is a tremendous honor for our staff and our team," Ryan said.
"Considering all that has happened in the Big Ten this season and some
of the outstanding performances by a number of teams, this is a
wonderful tribute to our players. It is a great honor for the University
of Wisconsin because it is a recognition of our championship season and
how hard the players worked to achieve their goals."
Ryan led the Badgers to their first outright Big Ten title since 1947
and their first back-to-back championships since 1923-24. He is just the
third coach in league history to win titles in each of his first two
seasons. His 41 victories are the most of any second-year UW coach and
his 23 Big Ten wins are ties with basketball hall of famer Walter
Meanwell for the most of any Wisconsin second-year coach.
Penney was a unanimous first-team selection by both the coaches and the
media, joining Illinois' Brian Cook as the only unanimous choices. A
first-teamer last season, Penney was the only player in the conference
to repeat this year. The most versatile player in the conference, Penney
is one of just 11 players in the country to average at least 16.0
points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists.
Devin Harris and Alando Tucker were also honored. Harris, who clinched
the Badgers' Big Ten championship with his free throw with 0.4 seconds
left against Illinois, earned second-team honors from the coaches and
was a third-team selection by the media. Tucker, the UW's freshman
sensation, was named to the coaches' all-freshman team and was an
honorable mention all-league choice by the media. This is the first time
since 1989 that three different UW players have received all-conference
Bo Ryan Named Big Ten Coach of the Year
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