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Friday, November 28, 2014
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Five Missouri men's basketball players honored with Big 12 awards

The Big 12 Conference announced its list of end-of-the-year awards for men's basketball Sunday, determined by the league’s coaches who cannot vote for their own players.

Missouri senior guard Marcus Denmon was named to the conference’s first team, making him the second player in program history to be named to the squad more than once in his career after Kareem Rush did so in 2001 and 2002. Denmon became Missouri's sixth all-time leading scorer Saturday. He has led the team with an average of 18 points and 5.1 rebounds per game this season.

Senior forward Ricardo Ratliffe earned a place on the second team after a productive regular season in which he shot 70.8 percent from the field while averaging 13.8 points and 7.5 rebounds.

Following Denmon and Ratliffe, senior guard Kim English found a spot on the conference’s third team for a second time in his career alongside sophomore point guard Phil Pressey.

In a year in which he was asked to perform the role of a power forward in the wake of senior forward Laurence Bowers’ season-ending ACL, senior guard Kim English has stepped up to score 14.1 points a contest while mainly guarding bigger opponents. He currently ranks second in the Big 12 in 3-point field goal percentage, netting a total of 31 for the league's most efficient range-shooting team.

Pressey has been the floor general for the No. 7 Tigers, excelling on both ends of the floor and leading the conference in assists (6.2 per game) and steals (2.1).

Junior guard Michael Dixon was the unanimous choice as the Big 12’s Sixth Man of the Year. In addition, Dixon, who once coined the phrase “pressure busts pipes” earlier in the season, was named to the All-Defensive Team.

Dixon has come off the bench to average 13.3 points, more than any player nationwide in such a role. He has scored in double figures in all but nine games this season.

Missouri coach Frank Haith, a popular name in national coach of the year discussions who has led Missouri to more regular season wins than any in program history in only his first year, did not receive the league award. That honor went to co-host recipients Kansas’s Bill Self and Iowa State’s Fred Hoiberg.

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