MANHATTAN, Kan. – Seniors Barry Brown, Jr., Kamau Stokes and Dean Wade each shared the Rolando Blackman Most Valuable Player Award, as Kansas State celebrated the accomplishments of its Big 12 Championship team at the annual men’s basketball banquet Thursday night at the Hilton Garden Inn.
In all, Brown captured four awards (Porky Morgan Most Inspirational Player, Rolando Blackman MVP, Jack Hartman Top Defensive Player and Mitch Richmond Mr. Basketball), while Stokes earned three (Blackman MVP, Bob Boozer Courage and 1st Battalion 7th Field Artillery “Never Broken”) and Wade won a pair (Blackman MVP and Tex Winter Top Offensive Player).
The senior trio, which led K-State to the sixth-most wins (88) in a four-year period and three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, combined for 4,533 points in their respective careers and each finished among the school’s Top 20 scorers. Brown finished as the school’s all-time leader in games played (139) and steals (254) and No. 5 on the all-time scoring list with 1,781 points, while Wade is one of just three Wildcats (Bob Boozer and Rodney McGruder) to finish among the career Top 10 in both scoring (1,510/10th) and rebounding (685/8th). Stokes finished among the school’s Top 5 in 3-point field goals (207/4th), assists (415/3rd) and steals (135/5th).
Other award winners included junior Xavier Sneed (Jack Hartman Top Defensive Player and Ernie Barrett Play Hard), junior Makol Mawien (Ed Nealy Most Improved Player), junior Pierson McAtee(Keith Amerson Academic Award) and sophomore Cartier Diarra (Dean Harris Sixth Man).
Brown won the Jack Hartman Top Defensive Player Award for the third consecutive season, while he repeated as Rolando Blackman MVP and Mitch Richmond Mr. Basketball. He won the Porky Morgan Most Inspirational Player Award for the first time. The Porky Morgan Award is the program’s oldest award and honors the longtime K-State Athletics Trainer from 1950-80.
The Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and a unanimous All-Big 12 First Team selection, Brown led the Wildcats in nearly every statistical category in 2018-19, including scoring (14.6 ppg.), double-digit scoring games (28), 20-point games (seven), field goals made (184) and attempted (425), free throws made (88) and attempted (124) and steals (65). He connected on 43.3 percent (184-of-425) from the field, including 29.8 percent (42-of-141) from 3-point range, and shot 71 percent (88-of-124) from the free throw line.
Stokes earned the Bob Boozer Award for the fourth consecutive season, while he was a repeat winner of the “Never Broken” Award. He was a first-time winner of the MVP Award. The “Never Broken” Award is given annually to commemorate the team’s partnership with the 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery unit at Fort Riley.
Stokes played perhaps his best basketball in the final month of the season, averaging a team-best 14 points with 3.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists in the last 8 games. He was spectacular in his last home game, totaling a game-high 19 points to go with a game-high 6 assists and zero turnovers against Oklahoma on March 9 and a team-high 18 points in the NCAA Tournament game against UC Irvine on March 22. For the season, he averaged 11 points on 37.9 percent (118-of-311) shooting, including 36 percent (67-of-186) from 3-point range, with a team-high 110 assists. He was named All-Big 12 honorable mention.
Wade was a repeat winner of both the Rolando Blackman MVP and Tex Winter Awards.
An All-Big 12 First Team selection for the second consecutive season, Wade proved to one of the most valuable players in the Big 12, as the Wildcats went 20-5 in games in which he played, including 13-2 in league action. He averaged 12.9 points on 49.2 percent (122-of-248) shooting, including 41.8 percent (23-of-55) from 3-point range, and 78.9 percent (56-of-71) from the free throw line to go with a team-best 6.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 30.4 minutes per game. He ranked second in scoring, double-digit scoring games (19) and 20-point games (four).
Sneed won the Ernie Barrett Play Hard Award for the second straight season, which goes annually to the single-season leader on the Wayne McClain Play Hard Chart and tracks deflections/blocks, steals, dives, loose balls, offensive rebounds and charges, while he shared the Jack Hartman Top Defensive honor with Brown.
An All-Big 12 honorable mention pick, Sneed ranked among the team’s top 4 in scoring (10.6 ppg.), rebounding (5.5 rpg.), assists (1.9 apg.), steals (1.4 spg.) and minutes (30.7 mpg.). He became the fourth member of the team to eclipse 1,000 career points in the NCAA Tournament game with UC Irvine on March 22.
Mawien was selected as the winner of the Ed Nealy Most Improved Player Award after the junior averaged 7.0 points on 52.6 percent (100-of-190) shooting to go with 4.9 rebounds and a team-high 23 blocked shots. One of just two Wildcats to start all 34 games, he scored in double figures in four of his last five games, including a double-double in the NCAA Tournament game with UC Irvine on March 22.
Diarra was named the winner of the newly-reconfigured Dean Harris Sixth Man Award, which is given to the team’s top reserve and named in honor of Harris, who passed away in 1974. He came of the bench in 17 of his 26 games played this past season, averaging 6.8 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 25.5 minutes per game. He scored in double figures in five of last seven games played, including a season-high 15 points against Iowa State in the semifinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship on March 15.
McAtee won the Keith Amerson Academic Award for the second consecutive season after earning Academic All-Big 12 First Team honors as well as the league’s top honor – the Dr. Gerald Lage Award – this past season. A walk-on who saw action in 15 games, he has been a member of the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll each semester he has been on the team. Amerson, who played at K-State from 1990-91, passed away in January.
K-State concluded the 2018-19 campaign with a 25-9 overall record and advanced to the school’s 31st NCAA Tournament. It was just the seventh 25-win season and the in consecutive seasons in school history. The Wildcats claimed their 21st conference championship, including their 19th won in the regular season, and captured their second in the Big 12 era. The team has now advanced to the NCAA Tournament nine times in the last 13 seasons, including five times in head coach Bruce Weber’s seven seasons.
2018-19 Kansas State Men’s Basketball Team Awards:
Porky Morgan Most Inspirational Award: Barry Brown, Jr.
Rolando Blackman Most Valuable Player Award: Barry Brown, Jr./Kamau Stokes/Dean Wade
Tex Winter Top Offensive Player Award: Dean Wade
Jack Hartman Top Defensive Player Award: Barry Brown, Jr./Xavier Sneed
Dean Harris Sixth Man Award: Cartier Diarra
Ernie Barrett Play Hard Award: Xavier Sneed
Ed Nealy Most Improved Award: Makol Mawien
Mitch Richmond Mr. Basketball Award: Barry Brown, Jr.
Bob Boozer Courage Award: Kamau Stokes
1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery “Never Broken” Award: Kamau Stokes
Keith Amerson Academic Award: Pierson McAtee
Director for Men’s Basketball Communications | K-State Athletics