Online Sportsbooks favor Frank Mason III to win AP Player of the Year
Online sportsbooks favor Kansas Jayhawks senior point guard Frank Mason III to win the Associated Press player of the year award. FM3 is averaging 20.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 5.1 assists per game, and shooting 48% from the floor and 49% from the three-point line to lead Universitas Kansiensis to a record-tying 13th consecutive Big 12 conference regular season championship with a 28-3 (16-2) in conference play. It’s safe to say that quite a few of those 28 wins wouldn’t have been possible without FM3, especially the late-game rallies against West Virginia and Baylor. Mason III has already been the recipient of the NBC Sports 2017 College Basketball Player of the Year and the 2017 Big 12 Conference Men’s Basketball Player of the Year awards.
FM3 have the odds-on favor at MyBookie sportsbook, but he is not the only candidate. One can never really rule out a guy with the last name Ball, such as UCLA Bruins freshman point guard Lonzo Ball. The Anaheim native is averaging 14.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 7.8 assists per game, and shooting 55% from the field and 42% from the beyond the arc. Ball leads the country in assists per game, and while he is not as proficient a scorer as Mason III, he does lead the country’s top-scoring offense. However, there is no better evidence of Ball’s impact in UCLA is the Bruins record; 5-17 (6-12) in 2015-16 and 28-3 (15-3) this season.
Ball has UCLA on the brink of a No. 1 finish in the NCAA tournament, but online sportsbooks think that Villanova Wildcats senior shooting guard Josh Hart will end up giving FM3 a run for his money. Hart is posting 18.7 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game, and shooting 50 field goal percentage and 40 three-point percentage. Villanova has won the Big East regular season championship every year that Hart has attended the school. Coincidence? Not very likely.
Other AP player of the year hopefuls include Purdue Boilermakers sophomore power forward Caleb Swanigan and Gonzaga Bulldogs junior point guard Nigel Williams-Goss. Swanigan is the college basketball double-double answer to Russell Westbrook NBA triple-double extravaganza – he has recorded 25 double-doubles this season, including four 20-20 showings. In addition to that, Swanigan is second in the nation in rebounds per game and is rated first in CBS National Player of the Year voting. As for Williams-Goss, he transferred to Gonzaga in 2015 and redshirted the 2015-16 season, but he didn’t miss a beat. If anything, he’s better than ever, averaging 16.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 4.7 assists per game, and shooting 51% from the field and 37% from the three-point line. The former Washington Husky led the Zags to 29 consecutive wins, the regular season championship, and four weeks at the top of the AP Poll. And what better segue than that to reminds us that these young’uns are the favorites to win the AP player of the year award at most online sportsbooks – as if they didn’t remind us of that with each and every one of their performances.