Feb. 28, 2012 I Complete MVC Release (PDF)
ST. LOUIS -- Missouri State University senior Kyle Weems (Sr., F, Topeka, Kan.) has been named to the All-Missouri Valley Conference first team, the league announced Tuesday, while teammate Anthony Downing (Jr., G, Atchison, Kan.) was named to the MVC All-Newcomer squad.
The tandem were the only two MSU award winners in the league's first round of postseason awards.
Weems, the 2011 MVC Larry Bird Player of the Year, has scored in double figures in 29 of 31 games this season and moved up to No. 2 on the Bears' career scoring list his senior season. He earned MVC Player of the Week honors for the sixth time in his career on Jan. 2 and also claimed National Player of the Week distinction the same week after helping the Bears to a win over then-No. 19 Creighton with a 31-point outburst in the conference opener.
He is averaging team-bests 15.4 points and 7.1 rebounds per game while tacking on 58 three-pointers, 44 assists, 19 steals and 18 blocks. He ranks second among all active Division I players in career double-figure scoring games (109) and is the only player in the nation -- and only player in MVC history -- with more than 1,800 points, 800 rebounds and 200 three-pointers in his career.
"It's awesome," Weems said. "It's been great having a great group of guys to pass me the ball when I'm open as well as a great coaching staff to put me in a position to be successful. It's just an extreme honor."
Weems is joined on the All-MVC first team by 2012 Player of the Year Doug McDermott of Creighton, Colt Ryan of Evansville, and the Wichita State pair of Garrett Stutz and Joe Ragland.
Downing has scored in double figures in eight of the last night games headed into this week's MVC Tournament in St. Louis. He is averaging 11.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game with 15 starts. He is shooting a team-best 83.3 percent from the free throw line.
He led the MVC in Newcomer of the Week honors this season, earning the Valley's top rookie distinction four times. He led a cast of three talented new faces on the Missouri State roster who collectively won the MVC Newcomer of the Week award eight times, the second-highest team total in league history.
Joining Downing on the five-man All-Newcomer Team are MVC Newcomer of the Year Carl Hall of Wichita State, Tyler Brown of Illinois State, Grant Gibbs of Creighton and Seth Tuttle of Northern Iowa. All are juniors except Tuttle, a freshman. Hall won Valley Newcomer of the Week honors just once this season.
The Bears finished 9-9 in MVC play this year to tie or third place in the 10-team league. MSU will take on No. 3 seed Evansville in the quarterfinal round of the State Farm MVC Tournament at 8:35 p.m. Friday at Scottrade Center in St. Louis.