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Keegan Murray Tabbed First-Team All-America By Sporting News

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Iowa Hawkeyes forward Keegan Murray (15) during a photo shoot at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, IA on Monday, September 13, 2021. (Stephen Mally/hawkeyesports.com)

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa men’s basketball sophomore forward Keegan Murray garnered two awards on Monday, earning first-team All-America accolades by Sporting News and named Big Ten Co-Player of the Week.

Joining Murray on the five-player All-America first team are Kofi Cockburn of Illinois, Wisconsin’s Johnny Davis, Ochai Agbaji of Kansas and Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe. Sporting News is one of four outlets used by the NCAA to determine its consensus All-America teams (Associated Press, National Association of Basketball Coaches, United States Basketball Writers Association, and Sporting News).

The Hawkeyes have had a student-athlete earn All-America honors by Sporting News four of the last seven seasons, including the last three seasons. Former Hawkeye Luka Garza earned first team accolades by the publication in 2020 and 2021, while Jarrod Uthoff was a second team selection in 2016.

Murray (6-foot-8, 225 pounds) ranks first in the country in Player Efficiency Rating (38.4); fourth in points per game (23.3); 29th in field goal percentage (.554); 39th in blocks per contest (2.1); and 46th in double-doubles (9). His 23.3 points per game average is tops among players from a major conference.

Murray is the only player nationally to average 23+ points, 8+ rebounds, and 2+ blocks this season and one of three players from a major conference with those averages over the last decade.

Murray averaged 7.2 points per game last year and is averaging 23.3 this season (+16.1). The last Big Ten player to increase his scoring by 16 points per game from one season to the next was Illinois’ Rick Schmidt, who went from 3.8 ppg in 1972-73 to 21.4 ppg in 1973-74 (+17.6).

The Cedar Rapids, Iowa, native has tallied 20+ points 22 times and 25+ points 13 times this season, both of which rank first among players from major conferences.

Murray is also on the Naismith Trophy Player of the Year Midseason Team, Lute Olson National Player of the Year Mid-Season List, and is a Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Finalist. He has been named Big Ten Player of the Week a program-best six times this season (Nov. 22; Dec. 20; Jan. 3; Feb. 14; Feb. 28, March 6).

Murray joins Ohio State’s Evan Turner (7 in 2009-10) and Purdue’s Caleb Swanigan (6 in 2016-17) as the only Big Ten players since the weekly award was introduced prior to the 1981-82 season to earn six or more weekly honors by the Big Ten in a single season.

Murray shares this week’s conference weekly honor with Nebraska’s Alonzo Verge Jr. Last week, Murray averaged a double-double in three games, averaging 23.7 points and 12 rebounds. The All-American also averaged three blocks, 2.7 3-pointers, and 2.3 assists. He shot 53 percent (8-of-15) from 3-point range and 77 percent (17-of-22) from the foul line.

In Iowa’s comfortable 82-61 win over Northwestern on Feb. 28, Murray poured in game bests in points (26) and rebounds (18), while also collecting three assists, two blocks, and two steals. He registered the double-double by halftime and his 18 rebounds are the most by Murray during conference play and most since pulling down 21 against N.C. Central (Nov. 16, 2021).

Murray had another sensational game in Iowa’s 11-point victory (82-71) at Michigan on March 3, totaling 23 points, seven rebounds, three blocks, three assists, and a steal. He shot a blistering 7-of-9 (.778) from the field, including a perfect 4-of-4 from 3-point range.

In Sunday night’s narrow defeat at No. 20 Illinois, Murray posted his team-leading ninth double-double (22 points, 11 rebounds). He also rejected a game-best four shots.

Murray and the 24th-ranked Hawkeyes (22-9, 12-8) return to action on Thursday in the second round of the Big Ten Tournament. Iowa will face the first-round winner between Northwestern-Nebraska at approximately 1 p.m. (CT) at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

2022 KEEGAN MURRAY HONORS
• Sporting News First Team All-America

  • John R. Wooden Award National Ballot (Semifinalist)
    • Naismith Player of the Year Trophy Midseason Team
    • Lute Olson National Player of the Year Midseason List
    • Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Finalist
    Sporting NewsMidseason Second Team All-America
    • The Athletic Midseason Second Team All-America
    • Naismith Trophy National Player of the Week (Feb. 14)
  • Big Ten Co-Player of the Week (March 7)
  • Big Ten Player of the Week (Feb. 28)
    • Big Ten Co-Player of the Week (Feb. 14)
    • Big Ten Player of the Week (Jan. 3)
    • Big Ten Player of the Week (Dec. 20)
    • Big Ten Co-Player of the Week (Nov. 22)