FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2020
ROSEMONT, Ill. — The Big Ten Conference announced its 2019-20 women’s basketball all-conference teams and individual award recipients on Monday during BTN’s Women’s Sports Report.
Iowa senior guard Kathleen Doyle was chosen as Big Ten Player of the Year by both the conference coaches and a select panel of Big Ten media members, the second consecutive season a Hawkeye student has swept both honors. Megan Gustafson was the 2019 Big Ten Player of Year, on the way to being chosen the consensus National Player of the Year, and she also earned Big Ten Player of the Year honors from the media in 2018.
Big Ten co-champion Northwestern picked up a pair of individual awards on Monday, with Joe McKeown chosen as Big Ten Coach of the Year by both his colleagues and the media, while Wildcat sophomore guard Veronica Burton was named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year by each voting body.
Ashley Owusu from Big Ten co-champion Maryland was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year by the conference coaches and media (she was also a unanimous Big Ten All-Freshman Team pick by the coaches), while Nebraska sophomore guard Leigha Brown was voted the Big Ten’s Sixth Player of the Year by both groups.
McKeown earns his first Big Ten Coach of the Year award and is the first Northwestern coach to receive the honor since 1990, when Don Perrelli was selected by the media. Burton becomes the third Wildcat in the past five seasons voted Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, following Ashley Deary’s back-to-back selections in 2016 and 2017.
Likewise, Owusu is the third Maryland student in the last five years named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year and the second in as many seasons following Taylor Mikesell’s selection by the coaches in 2019.
Brown is the first Nebraska student to receive the Big Ten Sixth Player of the Year honor since the Huskers joined the conference for the 2011-12 season.
Doyle joined Maryland senior guard Kaila Charles, Michigan sophomore forward Naz Hillmon and Northwestern junior guardLindsey Pulliam as unanimous first-team All-Big Ten selections by both the coaches and media. In addition, Rutgers’ Arella Guiranteswas a unanimous first-team choice by the coaches. The conference’s All-Big Ten teams consist of 10 first-team honorees, 10 second-team selections and honorable mention choices.
The Big Ten also recognized 14 Sportsmanship Award recipients in the sport of women’s basketball on Monday, one from each conference school. The students chosen are individuals who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. These students must also be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting.
All 13 games of this year’s Big Ten Tournament will be televised live to a national audience, with the first round through semifinal games from Wednesday through Saturday broadcast on BTN and the FOX Sports app. The Big Ten Tournament championship game on March 10 will be televised live on ESPN2 and the ESPN app.
This year’s Big Ten Tournament champion will earn the conference’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. Follow all the Big Ten Tournament action on the official Tournament Central web site atbigten.org/wbbt and on Twitter @B1GWBBall (use the hashtags #B1GTourney and #B1GWBBall). #B1GWBBall