By JIM O’CONNELL, AP Basketball Writer
GLENDALE, Arizona (AP) — Kansas guard Frank Mason III and Gonzaga coach Mark Few have won The Associated Press player and coach of the year awards, the news cooperative announced Thursday at the Final Four in Glendale, Arizona.
Mason led Kansas to its 13th consecutive Big 12 title. He received 37 votes Thursday from the same 65-member media panel that selects the weekly AP Top 25.
Few has taken the Zags to the NCAA Tournament in all 18 of his seasons there. He was a runaway winner Thursday receiving 31 votes from the panel.
Mason, a senior point guard, averaged 20.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 5.1 assists while shooting 48.7 percent from 3-point range.
Josh Hart of Villanova was second in player of the year voting with 16 votes, while Caleb Swanigan of Purdue had nine and Lonzo Ball of UCLA had three.
Mason is the first Kansas player to win the award. He is the first Big 12 player to win it since Blake Griffin of Oklahoma in 2009.
Sean Miller of Arizona received eight votes for the coach award while Chris Collins of Northwestern had seven and SMU’s Tim Jankovich got six.
Gonzaga is the only head coaching job Few has had and he has compiled a 502-112 record. The Zags have reached the West Coast Conference Tournament final in all of Few’s seasons.
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