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Honoring the little guys


The all-conference teams and league player of the year awards have been trickling out over the past week or so and getting overshadowed by some already-crazy conference tournaments. In that spirit, it is time for the second annual All-Mid Major squad, for those who generally get lost in postseason awards.

Note to e-mailers: The players eligible for this list may not come from the six BCS conferences, Conference USA, Atlantic 10, Mountain West or Western Athletic.

Stephen Curry, G, DavidsonDavidson lived up to the high expectations set for them thanks to Curry. He proved to be the driving force on a team that went 23-0 in Southern Conference play and managed to stay with powerhouses like Duke, Carolina and UCLA. Curry averaged 25.1 points per game, including 90 percent from the line and 44 percent from three. He scored 30 or more points eight times.

Mike Green, G, ButlerA.J. Graves may be the best-known Bulldog after his phenomenal junior season, but the key to Butler's success this season was Green. The point guard led the Horizon League regular-season champs in points (14.6), rebounds (6.4) and assists (5.2). The Towson transfer was the Horizon League Player of the Year and will play in his second NCAA tournament next week.

Jason Thompson, C, RiderThe top NBA prospect among mid-major players, Thompson wrapped up a stellar four-year career with his best season. The 6-foot-11 senior was the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Player of the Year and finished second in the nation in rebounding with 12.0 per game. He averaged 20.6 points, making him one of three players to average at least 20 points and 11 rebounds per game, and is also 13th in the nation in blocks.

Courtney Lee, G/F, Western KentuckyLee is another NBA prospect who benefited from a four-year college career. The 6-5 swingman averaged 20.6 points per game and was named Sun Belt Player of the Year and first-team All-Sun Belt for the third time. Lee is one of six active players with 2,000 career points and is among the league leaders in steals, free throw percentage and field goal percentage.

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Lester Hudson, G, Tennessee-MartinThe 23-year old made the most of his first season in Division I, averaging 25.5 points (fourth in the nation) and recording the first quadruple-double in D-I history when he had 25 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 steals against Central Baptist College. He also scored 35 against Memphis and 36 against Vanderbilt while leading the Skyhawks to their second winning season in their 16-year history in Division I.

Eric Maynor, G, VCUThe Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year led the Rams (24-7, 15-3) to the league's regular-season title. Maynor averaged 17.8 points, 5.4 assists and 4.2 rebounds from the point.

Adam Emmenecker, G, DrakeEmmenecker improbably earned Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year honors while averaging just 8.5 points per game. His 6.2 assists were 12th in the nation and the former walk-on shot 83 percent from the foul line.

Al Fisher, G, Kent StateThe junior college transfer got better as the season wore on and was the Mid-American Player of the Year. Had 28 points in a win at St. Mary's and averaged 14.3 points, 4.2 assists and 3.8 rebounds.

Arizona Reid, F, High PointThe two-time Big South Player of the Year put up monster numbers (23.9 points, 11.0 rebounds), including a 42-point, 14-rebound effort against VMI.

Jeremy Pargo, G, GonzagaPargo became the eighth straight Bulldog to win West Coast Conference Player of the Year honors after averaging 11.9 points, 6.0 assists and 3.6 rebounds for the WCC regular-season champs.

Charron Fisher, G/F, Niagara; Patrick Mills, G, St. Mary's; Kyle Hines, F, UNC Greensboro; A.J. Graves, G, Butler; Justin Hare, G, Belmont; Leon Williams, F, Ohio; Alex Harris, G, UC-Santa Barbara; Tony Lee, G, Robert Morris; Marques Blakely, G, Vermont

Keno Davis, DrakeThe first-year head coach is in the discussion for national Coach of the Year honors after leading Drake (28-4) to the MVC regular-season and tournament titles. The Bulldogs lost four starters from a 17-15 team but made the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1971. Davis, 35, took over for his father, Tom, and led Drake to nonconference wins over Iowa, Iowa State and Butler.