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Mid-Major Madness Big South Awards

The regular season came to a close on Saturday with a crazy triple-overtime win from Charleston Southern. Now it's officially awards season until the conference tournament tips off on Wednesday in Myrtle Beach.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

A big triple overtime win over High Point gave the Charleston Southern Buccaneers the regular season Big South title, the one seed in Myrtle Beach, and the automatic NIT birth for the conference. Now that the regular season is over it's officially awards season until the conference tournament begins on Wednesday in the HTC Center.

Player of the Year

Saah Nimley, Charleston Southern

When Saah Nimley went down due to injury last year no one was quite sure how productive the veteran guard would be his final season in North Charleston. Nimley quieted the critics this year by leading the Bucs to a regular season Big South championship and averaging 21.5 points, 4.1 assists, and 4.1 rebounds per game. His nearly 22 points per game ranks fifth nationally and the rebound numbers are staggering given that he stands just 5'8.  When Nimley posted just 6 points against Longwood on Valentines Day I thought his Player of the Year hopes were close to shot and the award would go to Jerome Hill, John Brown, or Keon Moore. Nimley responded after that game by averaging 30 points per game in the Bucs' last four contests.

Freshman of the Year

DeSean Murray , Presbyterian

DeSean Murray posted 14 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals in his first ever college game and that was in Cameron Indoor Stadium all the way back on November 14. The 6'5 freshman then basically missed the rest of the first half of the season but returned for Big South play with a chip on his shoulder. Murray finished the Big South campaign averaging 15.5 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 1.6 assists while leading the Blue Hose to the best season since 2012. Murray ran away with this award that was looking to go to Longwood's Ryan Badowski or Wintrop's Xavier Cooks.

Coach of the Year

Barclay Radebaugh, Charleston Southern

I'll be honest I didn't believe in Charleston Southern at the beginning of the year and picked the Bucs to finish sixth in my preseason rankings. Barclay Radebaugh's squad started the season off with a bang beating Ole Miss on opening night. Since then the Bucs have been just about the most solid team in the conference and out-performed their preseason ranking more than anyone. Presbyterian and Longwood were the only other two teams to out-perform their preseason conference poll rankings but with all due respect Jayson Gee and Gregg Nibert, they didn't have the year that Radebaugh put together in the Buc Dome.

MMM All-1st Team:

G- Saah Nimley, Charleston Southern
G- Keon Moore, Winthrop
F- Javonte Green, Radford
F- John Brown, High Point
F- Jerome Hill, Gardner-Webb

MMM All-2nd Team:

G- Quincy Taylor, Longwood
G- Andrew Rowsey, UNC Asheville
G- Warren Gillis, Coastal Carolina
F- Will Saunders, Charleston Southern
F- DeSean Murray, Presbyterian

Honorable Mentions: Jordan Downing (PC), Josh Cameron (CCU), Tyrell Nelson (GWU), Badou Diagne (CCU), Shaquille Johnson (LWU), Tyler Strange (GWU), D.J. Mason (CU), Andre Smith (WIN), Arlon Harper (CSU)

MMM All-Freshman Team:

G- Kevin Vannatta, UNC Asheville
G- Ryan Badowski, Longwood 
F- Curtis Phillips, Campbell
F- DeSean Murray, Presbyterian 
F- Xavier Cooks, Winthrop