Kalin Lucas Named Team MVP at Annual Awards Banquet

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EAST LANSING, Mich. – Sophomore guard Kalin Lucas was named the Michigan State basketball team’s MVP by both the team and media and was just one of many to be honored on Monday, March 16 at the 2009 Men’s Basketball Awards Banquet.

Lucas, who was also the 2009 Big Ten Player of the Year, received the Charles S. Philips MVP award as selected by the media and the MVP award as selected by the team. Lucas is the first sophomore to sweep both team MVP awards since Paul Davis in 2004. In 32 games this season, Lucas is averaging a team-leading 14.8 points per game and was the first Spartan to be named Big Ten Player of the Year since Morris Peterson in 2000. He led the Spartans in scoring in 11 of 18 regular-season conference games this season and ranked second in the Big Ten during the regular season with a 16.5 point per game average in league contests.

For the third consecutive year, senior Travis Walton took home the John E. Benington Best Defensive Player Award. Walton, who was also named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, joins Ben Tower (1982-84), Charlie Bell (1998-2001) and Kelvin Torbert (2002-05) as players who have won the award at least three times in their career. While always counted on the defend the Big Ten’s top offensive players, Walton ranked third in the league in steals at 1.83 per game in conference action.

Walton also grabbed his third consecutive Antonio Smith Guts and Glue Award and joins Aloysius Anagonye (2001-03) as the only other three-time winner in the award’s nine-year history.

Walton’s final award of the evening was the Stephen G. Scofes Inspirational Player Award, which he also received for the third consecutive year. Since the award’s inception in 1963, he is the second player to earn the accolade three times, along with Todd Wolfe (1988-90).

The third and final three-time award winner of the night was senior Goran Suton who was honored with his third straight Chairman of the Boards Award. Suton, who earned second-team All-Big Ten honors, currently averages 7.9 rebounds per game and led the league in conference games at 8.4 boards per contest. Paul Davis (2004-06) is the only other player in Spartan history to garner the honor three times. Suton is just the sixth player in Michigan State history to lead the Big Ten in rebounding in conference games since 1959, joining Horace Walker (1960), Lindsay Hairston (1974, 75), Kevin Willis (1983), Jamie Feick (1996) and Antonio Smith (1997).

Sophomore Durrell Summers and freshman Delvon Roe shared Most Improved Player honors. Summers averaged 4.9 points per game last season and is currently fifth on the team in scoring at 8.4 points per game this year. He posted a career-performance earlier this season at Ohio State with 26 points including six 3-pointers.

Roe started 25 games this season and provided MSU with a solid post presence on both ends of the floor. The freshman was hampered by knee injuries early on but steadily received increased playing time and currently averages 6.0 points per game and 5.4 rebounds per game. Since Feb. 1, he is averaging 7.7 points and 5.8 rebounds.

There were also co-recipients of the Unsung Player Award as senior Idong Ibok and junior Isaiah Dahlman shared the award. Ibok appeared in 22 games and got five starts this season and provided valuable minutes off the bench for the Green and White, especially on the defensive end of the court. Dahlman, who was limited by injury for a portion of the year, played in 13 games this season.

Ibok joined sophomores Mike Kebler and Tom Herzog as recipients of the Scholar-Athlete Award.

Junior Jon Crandell, who appeared in eight games this year, took home the Tim Bograkos Walk-On Award, while Sean Dwyer, Nick Hendon, Ryan Linhart and Reed Schuitema all garnered the Senior Manager Award.

Jay Vincent, who stared for MSU from 1982-85, was honored with the Distinguised Spartan Award. Vincent was a four-year starter, a 1981 All-America selection and a member of the 1979 NCAA Championship team. Despite standing just 6-foot-8, he was the starter on back-to-back Big Ten Championship teams in 1978 & 79, and left MSU as the school’s No. 2 all-time scorer at 1,914 career points. (He currently ranks fifth in scoring.) Today, his No. 31 jersey hangs from the rafters.

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