The University of Utah’s best men’s basketball player this season was rewarded as such on Monday afternoon.
Sophomore wing Timmy Allen was named to the All-Pac-12 second team as the league announced its major award winners ahead of the conference tournament, which tips off Wednesday afternoon in Las Vegas.
Allen, an All-Freshman selection last season, is averaging 17.5 points, 7.3 rebounds, 3 assists and 1.2 steals for the 16-14 Utes, who open the Pac-12 Tournament against Oregon State in a first-round game Wednesday. Allen has six double-doubles and has led the Utes in scoring in 21 of 30 games.
Allen’s All-Pac-12 nod is the first for a Utes sophomore since Jakob Poeltl was a first-team selection in 2016.
Pac-12 men’s basketball major awards
Player of the Year: Payton Pritchard, Oregon.
Freshman of the Year: Zeke Nnaji, Arizona.
Defensive Player of the Year: Tyler Bey, Colorado.
Most Improved Player of the Year: Chris Smith, UCLA.
Sixth Man of the Year: Alonzo Verge, Arizona State.
Coach of the Year: Mick Cronin, UCLA.
First team: Oscar da Silva, Stanford; CJ Elleby, Washington State; Remy Martin, Arizona State; Zeke Nnaji, Arizona; Onyeka Okongwu, USC; Payton Pritchard, Oregon; Chris Smith, UCLA; Isaiah Stewart, Washington; Tres Tinkle, Oregon State; McKinley Wright IV, Colorado.
Second team: Timmy Allen, Utah; Tyler Bey, Colorado; Matt Bradley, Cal; Nico Mannion, Arizona; Jonah Matthews, USC.
All-Freshman team: Nico Mannion, Arizona; Zeke Nnaji, Arizona; Onyeka Okongwu, USC; Isaiah Stewart, Washington; Tyrell Terry, Stanford.
All-Defensive team: Tyler Bey, Colorado; Kylor Kelley, Oregon State; Jonah Mathews, USC; Bryce Willis, Stanford; McKinley Wright IV, Colorado.
Both Gach named Pac-12 Player of the Week
The Utes sophomore guard earned the final regular-season honor after scoring a career-high 28 points in Saturday afternoon’s 74-72 overtime win over Colorado.
Playing mainly point guard, with freshman Rylan Jones out with a concussion, Gach hit a turnaround jumper in the lane with three seconds left to force overtime, then hit three free throws with 0.6 seconds in the extra session to provide the final margin.
Gach, mired in a slump for much of January and February, has busted loose over the past three games. In that stretch, Gach is averaging 20.6 points on 59.5% shooting from the floor. Of those three games, Gach has mostly ran the point in the past two after Jones went down early in the first half at Cal on Feb. 29.
Jones’ status for Wednesday’s Pac-12 Tournament first-round game vs. Oregon State is to be determined. Utes coach Larry Krystkowiak is slated to address reporters Tuesday afternoon in Las Vegas.