IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa sophomore forward Keegan Murray has been named a finalist for the 2022 Lute Olson Men’s Basketball Player of the Year and the Lefty Driesell Defensive Player of the Year awards.
Former Hawkeye All-American Luka Garza was the recipient of the 2021 Lute Olson Award. The award, which has been presented annually to the top Division I college basketball player since 2010, is named in honor of Hall of Fame coach Lute Olson. He won 776 games in 34 seasons, nine of which were spent at the University of Iowa. Olson, who passed away last August, is one of 25 head coaches in NCAA history to win 700 or more games (all divisions) and ranks ninth on the Division I career victories list. Olson is the all-time winningest coach at Arizona (587-190, .755) and third winningest coach in Iowa history (167-91, .647).
Murray becomes the first Hawkeye to be named a finalist for the Lefty Driesell Award. The award, which is presented annually to the top defensive player in Division I basketball, is named in honor of the legendary former coach. Driesell won 786 games in 41 years at Davidson, Maryland, James Madison and Georgia State. He ranks eighth on the NCAA career Division I coaches victories list and his teams at each stop were known for playing tenacious defense.
Earlier this month, Murray became the program’s fourth consensus first-team All-American, joining Murray Wier (1948), Charles Darling (1952), and Garza (2020 and 2021).
Murray is also a Wooden Award Semifinalist and a Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Finalist.
Murray (6-foot-8, 225 pounds) ranks first in the country in Player Efficiency Rating (37.8); fourth in points per game (23.5); 34th in field goal percentage (.554); 46th in blocks per contest (1.94); and 51st in double-doubles (10). His 23.5 points per game average is tops among players from a major conference and marks the third consecutive season a Hawkeye has led the Big Ten in scoring (Garza in 2020 and 2021). Murray is the only player nationally to average 23+ points and 8+ rebounds this season.
Murray averaged 7.2 points per game last year and averaged 23.5 this season (+16.3). The last Big Ten player to increase his scoring by 16 points per game from one season to the next was Illinois’ Rick Schmidt, who went from 3.8 ppg in 1972-73 to 21.4 ppg in 1973-74 (+17.6).
The Cedar Rapids, Iowa, native tallied 20+ points 26 times and 25+ points 16 times this season, both of which rank first nationally. Murray was voted the Big Ten Tournament Most Outstanding Player after totaling a tournament record 103 points and 38 field goals made in four games in leading the Hawkeyes to their third tournament championship and first since 2006.
He was named Big Ten Player of the Week a program-best six times this season (Nov. 22; Dec. 20; Jan. 3; Feb. 14; Feb. 28, March 6). Murray joins Ohio State’s Evan Turner (7 in 2009-10) and Purdue’s Caleb Swanigan (6 in 2016-17) as the only Big Ten players since the weekly award was introduced prior to the 1981-82 season to earn six or more weekly honors by the Big Ten in a single season.
2022 KEEGAN MURRAY HONORS
• Naismith Player of the Year Trophy Finalist
• Lute Olson National Player of the Year Finalist
• Lefty Driesell Defensive Player of the Year Finalist
• Consensus First Team All-America
• Sporting News First Team All-America
• Associated Press First Team All-America
• USBWA First Team All-America
• The Athletic First Team All-America
• NABC Second Team All-America Team
• NABC First Team All-District Team
• USBWA All-District VI Team
• All-Big Ten First Team honoree (unanimous)
• Associated Press All-Big Ten First Team selection (unanimous)
• John R. Wooden Award National Ballot (Semifinalist)
• Big Ten Tournament Most Outstanding Player and All-Tournament Team
• Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Finalist
• NABC First Team All-District
• The Athletic Midseason Second Team All-America
• Naismith Trophy National Player of the Week (Feb. 14)
• Big Ten Co-Player of the Week (March 7)
• Big Ten Player of the Week (Feb. 28)
• Big Ten Co-Player of the Week (Feb. 14)
• Big Ten Player of the Week (Jan. 3)
• Big Ten Player of the Week (Dec. 20)
• Big Ten Co-Player of the Week (Nov. 22)