ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected Air Force guard Michael Lyons as its Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week for games ending the week of Sunday, Feb. 17. The USBWA’s weekly honor is presented by Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook and has been handed out each Tuesday this season. Lyons is the season’s final recipient.
As the Mountain West Conference Player of the Week, Lyons was nominated for the weekly award, which was chosen by a representative of the USBWA board of directors from a list of Division I conference players of the week.
Lyons, a 6-5 senior from Newport News, Va., averaged 36.0 points per game while shooting 60.9 percent from the field as the Falcons split a pair of conference outings last week. On Wednesday, he scored a game-high 27 points as the Falcons snapped an 11-game losing streak to UNLV in a 71-56 victory.
He followed that performance by scoring more points in a game than any Air Force player in over half a century when he scored a career-high 45 points on 17-25 from the field in an 89-86 loss to Colorado State. The 45 points, the third-highest scoring effort by a Division I player this season, were the third-most in a Mountain West game in league history and tied for the fifth-most in a single game overall. In addition, it was the fifth-best scoring effort in program history and the most points scored by a Falcon since Bob Beckel’s school-record 50 vs. Arizona on Feb. 28, 1959. It was also the most points ever by a Falcon in a conference game.
This is the fourth season that the USBWA has selected a national player of the week. The weekly Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week will be considered for the Oscar Robertson Trophy watch list, which will be released at mid-season.
Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation’s oldest award and the only one named after a former player.
At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership. The winner of the Oscar Robertson Trophy presented by Aflac will be presented by its namesake, Oscar Robertson, at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards on April 15, 2013, at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. TheHenry Iba Coach of the Year Award and the Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award will also be presented at the gala to be held annually the Monday following the NCAA Men’s Final Four.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and the Oscar Robertson Trophy, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.
Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, the most comprehensive college basketball publication in the world, returns for its 32nd season, bigger and better in 2012-13. Blue Ribbon – long-known as “The Bible of College Basketball” – gives its readers the most thorough, up-to-date and timely evaluations of every Division I team in the country. For more information about Blue Ribbon Yearbooks, visit blueribbonyearbookonline.com.
2012-13 Oscar Robertson National Players of the Week
• Week of Dec. 9: Brandon Paul, Illinois (Big Ten Conference)
• Week of Dec. 16: Doug McDermott, Creighton (Missouri Valley Conference)
• Week of Dec. 23: Victor Rudd, South Florida (Big East Conference)
• Week of Dec. 30: Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA (Pac-12 Conference)
• Week of Jan. 6: Trey Burke, Michigan (Big Ten Conference)
• Week of Jan. 13: Elston Turner, Texas A&M (Southeastern Conference)
• Week of Jan. 20: Roosevelt Jones, Butler (Atlantic 10 Conference)
• Week of Jan. 27: Darrun Hilliard, Villanova (Big East Conference)
• Week of Feb. 3: Shane Larkin, Miami (Atlantic Coast Conference)
• Week of Feb. 10: Mason Plumlee, Duke (Atlantic Coast Conference)
• Week of Feb. 17: Michael Lyons, Air Force (Mountain West Conference)