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This is not a joke: Klay Thompson named all-Pac-10 first team

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The Pac-10 just released its all-conference awards, and in what calls into question the validity of the entire process, Klay Thompson was named to the conference's first team.

Look, I love Klay. I'm very happy for him to get this award, because I'm happy anytime a Cougar wins something, considering how often it seems like we get overlooked. But there is no way on God's green earth that Klay Thompson deserved to be on the first team (or even second team, for that matter) of this conference after his performance over the last 18 games, which is what I thought the criteria was. Sorry.

EDIT: Some of you might be wondering why this is true when a guy averaged nearly 20 points per game. First off, he didn't average that in Pac-10 play, which is supposed to be the criteria for these teams -- he averaged 16.1. Second, raw stats don't tell the whole story. He took more shots than everyone in the conference but Landry Fields, yet could only muster 16 points per game? 

That's why his tempo-neutral stats tell the better story. He had the 32nd best effective field goal percentage and 51st overall offensive rating. FIFTY-FIRST! Klay was great at times, but in Pac-10 play -- when you take into account just how many shots he took -- he was probably the least efficient scorer in the conference. There aren't many guys in this league who wouldn't score 16 or more points per game if they took nearly 15 shots a game.

I'm not trying to hate on the guy. I love him. I'm glad he's ours. He's going to challenge for conference player of the year next year. But he didn't deserve to be on that team this year.

However, if we want to talk about people who were correctly recognized, let's talk about DeAngelo Casto making the all-defensive team. Congratulations to him, although I think he should have been on the all-conference second team ahead of Calvin Haynes.

Also, congratulations to Reggie Moore for rightfully being selected to the all-freshman team, although that was kind of a no-brainer.

While we're criticizing the coaches, by the way, how about their choice of a zone defense player (OSU's Seth Tarver) as their defensive player of the year? I know he racked up a ton of steals, but c'mon ... that's like giving the Heisman to a Texas Tech quarterback because he threw 50 touchdowns. Silly.

Complete results after the jump. We'll have our CougCenter all-conference awards in the next couple of days. I can virtually guarantee we will differ significantly in some spots.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR:  Jerome Randle, California
FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR:  Derrick Williams, Arizona
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Seth Tarver, Oregon State
MOST IMPROVED PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Nikola Vucevic, USC
COACH OF THE YEAR:  Herb Sendek, Arizona State

FIRST TEAM 

Name Pos. Year Hometown
Ty Abbott, ASU G Jr. Phoenix, ARIZ
Patrick Christopher, CAL G Sr. Compton, Calif.
Landry Fields, STAN G/F Sr. Long Beach, Calif.
Quincy Pondexter, WASH F Sr. Fresno, Calif.
Jerome Randle, CAL G Sr. Chicago, Ill.
Michael Roll, UCLA G Sr. Aliso Viejo, Calif.
Isaiah Thomas, WASH G So. Tacoma, Wash.
Klay Thompson, WSU G So. Ladera Ranch, Calif.
Derrick Williams, ARIZ F Fr. La Mirada, Calif.

Second Team

Name Pos. Year Hometown
Jamal Boykin, CAL F Sr. Los Angeles, Calif
Jeremy Green, STAN G So. Austin, Texas
Calvin Haynes, OSU G Jr. Reseda, Calif.
Theo Robertson, CAL F Sr. Pittsburg, Calif.
Nikola Vecevic, USC F So. Bar, Montenegro

Honorable Mention (receiving at least three votes): DeAngelo Casto (WSU, So., F), Derek Glasser (ASU, Sr., G), Dwight Lewis (USC, Sr., G), Roeland Schaftenaar (OSU, Sr., F/C), Seth Tarver (OSU, Sr., G/F).

Pac-10 All-Freshmen Team

Name Pos. Ht. Hometown
Tyler Honeycutt, UCLA F 6-9 Los Angeles, Calif
Trent Lockett, ASU G 6-4 Minnetonka, Minn.
Reggie Moore, WSU G 6-2 Seattle, Wash.
Reeves Nelson, UCLA F 6-8 Modesto, Calif.
Derrick Williams, ARIZ F 6-8 La Mirada, Calif.

Honorable Mention (receiving at least three votes):  E.J. Singler (ORE, G/F).  

Pac-10 All-Defensive Team

Name Pos. Year Hometown
DeAngelo Cato, WSU F So. Spokane, Wash.
Jorge Gutierrez, CAL G So.

Chihuahua, Mexico

Justin Holiday, WASH G Jr.

Chatsworth, Calif.

Venoy Overton, WASH G Jr. Seattle, Wash.
Seth Tarver, OSU G/F Sr. Portland, Ore.

Honorable Mention (receiving at least three votes): Eric Boateng (ASU, Sr., C), Patrick Christopher (CAL, Sr., G), Marcus Johnson (USC, Sr., F), Nikola Vucevic (USC, So., F).