The Big Ten released its weekly award winners for Week 12 of the regular season and Illinois and Maryland ended up splitting the awards. Jalen Smith was named Big Ten Player of the Week and Kofi Cockburn was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week.
Smith had an impressive week for the Terps, averaging 27.0 points, 11.0 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game in wins over Northwestern and Indiana on the road last week. This is the first time he’s earned Big Ten Player of the Week honors during his career.
Similarly, Cockburn also had a big week. He averaged 13.5 points, 9.0 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game in Illini road wins over Purdue and Michigan. The wins pushed Illinois to 15-5 overall and atop the Big Ten standings. This is the seventh time Cockburn has been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week during his career.
Congratulations are in order for both players. Don’t be surprised if these two show back up on this list given how they have played to date.