Ohio State's Prahalis, Penn State's Bentley Share Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year Distinction
Oct. 27, 2011
Park Ridge, Ill. - The Big Ten announced on Thursday that Ohio State's Samantha Prahalis and Penn State's Alex Bentley shared conference Preseason Player of the Year accolades from the coaches, while Bentley earned the nod from a selected media panel. Penn State was selected as the preseason favorite by both the coaches and media.
Prahalis was a second-team All-Big Ten selection a season ago and led the conference in assists, guiding the Buckeyes to the third round of the NCAA Tournament. With Prahalis at the point, the Buckeyes won 24 games and claimed their third straight Big Ten Tournament title.
Bentley was chosen as a first-team All-Big Ten performer as a sophomore as she led the Lady Lions to a 25-win campaign and the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Penn State guard was the lone unanimous selection to the coaches' Preseason All-Big Ten squad.
The Lady Lions return four starters from a team that finished second in the conference standings last season and appeared in the Big Ten Tournament championship game for the first time since 2004. Penn State returns 10 letterwinners, along with last season's Big Ten Freshman and Sixth Player of the Year Maggie Lucas.
Purdue, which returns all five of its starters from a season ago, was selected to finish second by the coaches and the media. Iowa was picked to finish third in the coaches poll, while Michigan State was tabbed third in the media vote.
Both the coaches and media selected identical Preseason All-Big Ten squads. In addition to Bentley and Prahalis, Illinois' Karisma Penn, Iowa's Jaime Printy and Michigan State's Lykendra Johnson were selected as members of the coaches' and media's preseason teams.
The complete 2011 Preseason All-Big Ten Teams and preseason polls can be found below.
2011 Preseason All-Big Ten Teams and Preseason Polls
Preseason Coaches' Poll
Preseason Coaches Team
Karisma Penn, Jr., F, ILL
Jaime Printy, Jr., G, IOWA
Lykendra Johnson, Sr., F, MSU
Samantha Prahalis, Sr., G, OSU
Alex Bentley, Jr., G, PSU
Coaches' Preseason Players of the Year
Preseason Media Poll
Preseason Media Team
Media's Preseason Player of the Year