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March 10, 2014

Notebook: Stauskas named second-team All-American

The awards are starting to roll in for sophomore guard Nik Stauskas. The Sporting News named him second-team All-American, announcing their honorees in a release Monday afternoon.

For the season, Stauskas is shooting 48.9 percent from the field (151-of-309) and an impressive 45.8 percent from three-point range (71-of-155), averaging 17.4 points per game.

Here is The Sporting News' All-American squad:

First Team:
Nick Johnson, Arizona
Sean Kilpatrick, Cincinnati
Doug McDermott, Creighton
Jabari Parker, Duke
Russ Smith, Louisville

Second Team:
Nik Stauskas, Michigan
Shabazz Napier, Connecticut
Marcus Paige, North Carolina
T.J. Warren, North Carolina State
Andrew Wiggins, Kansas

Third Team:
Kyle Anderson, UCLA
Aaron Gordon, Arizona
DeAndre Kane, Iowa State
Fred VanVleet, Wichita State
Scottie Wilbekin, Florida.

Stauskas has also been named Big Ten Player Of The Week, marking the fourth time this season he has earned the award.

Stauskas has been playing some of his best basketball of the season recently. In two games this week, he scorched both Illinois and Indiana.

Last Tuesday, Michigan traveled to Champaign with a chance to seal the deal on an outright Big Ten Championship, the program's first since 1986, with a win. Stauskas disassembled the Illinois defense, which had held its four previous opponents under the 50-point mark. He shot 8-of-11 from the field (72.7 percent), including a 7-of-9 mark from three-point range (77.8 percent), to finish with 24 points.

In the regular-season finale, Stauskas added 21 points on 6-of-13 shooting to help the Wolverines beat Indiana, 84-80, snapping a three-game losing skid to the Hoosiers.

Stauskas has surpassed the 20-point plateau in four of the Wolverines' last five games, including a game-high 25 points in a 79-70 win over Michigan State Feb. 23.

Stauskas finishes the regular season with more Big Ten Player Of The Week honors (four) than any other player in the league.

The conference will announce its All-Big Ten team Monday at 6 p.m., including the Big Ten Player Of The Year award, which could go to Stauskas. The award, which was given to former point guard Trey Burke last season, has never gone to two different players from the same school in back-to-back seasons.

The Wolverines will begin their quest for a Big Ten Tournament title Friday at noon. It is the first time the Wolverines have ever been the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament, and they will play the winner of the Thursday game between No. 8 seed Indiana and No. 9 seed Illinois.

Note: Michigan Takes A Leap In The Polls

The Wolverines capped off the regular season with five straight wins to close out an outright Big Ten title, earning the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament by a whopping three games.

With the team's late-game surge, Michigan has taken a jump in the national polls, too. The Associate Press Top 25 lists Michigan (23-7 overall, 15-3 Big Ten) as the No. 8 team in the country.

The Wolverines were No. 12 in the poll last week. Other Big Ten teams in the rankings are No. 12 Wisconsin, which fell out of the top 10 after Sunday's loss to Nebraska, No. 22 Michigan State and No. 24 Ohio State.

Michigan jumped from No. 12 to No. 9 in this week's USA Today Coaches' Poll, too.

The rest of the Big Ten looks like this in the poll: No. 13 Wisconsin, No. 22 Michigan State and No. 24 Ohio State.

After losing five of its last six regular-season games, Iowa fell out of both major polls this week, dropping from No. 24 in the AP poll and No. 25 in the USA Today Coaches' poll to unranked.




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