St. Louis -
Illinois State men’s basketball senior guard Paris Lee is the 2017 Missouri Valley Conference Larry Bird Player of the Year and the MVC Defensive Player of the Year, the league office announced Tuesday.
The all-time steals leader at ISU, Lee is the first Redbird to earn the league's top individual player honor in 16 seasons. In addition to averaging 13.0 points per game, Lee leads the league in steals (2.0), assists (5.1) and 3-pointers (69).
Lee received 100 total points to outdistance Wichita State's Markis McDuffie (34 points) and Landry Shamet (30 points). Six different student-athletes received first-place tallies, including Lee, McDuffie, Shamet, Alize Johnson of Missouri State, Milton Doyle of Loyola, and Jeremy Morgan of Northern Iowa.
Voting was conducted by coaches, sports information directors and a media panel (voters could not vote for their own student-athlete). The last Redbird to win MVC player of the year award was Tarise Bryson in 2001.
He is a national champion. Even if he doesn't feel like one.
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