From the University of Nevada, Reno:
The Mountain West released its 2016-17 Preseason All-Conference Men’s Basketball Team today in conjunction with the start of media day at the Renaissance Las Vegas Hotel. The team, as selected by members of the media, is made up of five returning 2015-16 all-conference selections, including two first-team honorees. The five-member preseason squad is comprised of one senior, three juniors and a sophomore.
New Mexico’s Elijah Brown received Preseason Mountain West Player of the Year honors, while San Diego State’s Montaque Gill-Caesar garnered Preseason MW Newcomer of the Year accolades and SDSU’s Jalen McDaniels and Utah State’s Koby McEwen earned the Preseason MW Co-Freshmen of the Year nod.
Brown, a 6-foot-4, 200-pound guard, was a first-team All-MW selection and was named MW Newcomer of the Year last season after averaging 21.7 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. The native of Orange County, California, poured in 694 points, which ties as the fifth-most in a single season in Mountain West history.
Gill-Caesar, a sophomore from Ontario, Canada, redshirted in 2015-16 after transferring from Missouri. As a freshman with the Tigers, he played in 27 games, starting 13, averaging 9.1 points and scoring in double figures in 13 contests.
McDaniels earned Associated Press Washington state Class 4A first-team honors as a senior after averaging 19 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks per game. The 6-foot-9 forward helped lead Federal Way High School to a 29-0 record and a 4A state title in 2015-16. McDaniels ranks in the top 150 by ESPN, Rivals, Scout and 247Sports and earned a four-star rating from Rivals, Scout and 247Sports.
McEwen, a native of Toronto, Canada, averaged 18.7 points, 5.4 assists and 4.6 rebounds per game as a senior at Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant, Utah. The 6-foot-4 guard was listed among ESPN’s top 100 recruits and was listed as the 19th-best point guard nationally.
Joining Brown on the preseason MW All-Conference team were teammate Tim Williams, San Diego State’s Trey Kell, Utah State’s Jalen Moore and Nevada’s Cameron Oliver. This is the second straight season Williams has earned preseason recognition.
Williams, who earned second-team all-conference honors in 2015-16, started all 32 games for New Mexico, shooting 60.4 percent from the floor and averaging 16.8 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. The 60.4 shooting percentage is the eighth-best in program history.
Kell, a 6-foot-4 guard, was an All-Mountain West first team selection last season after starting all 38 games for the Aztecs. The native of San Diego, California, averaged a team-best 12.6 points per game, to go along with 3.7 boards and 1.7 assists per contest.
Moore, a third-team all-conference honoree in 2015-16, led Utah State in scoring (15.2) and rebounding (6.0) for the second consecutive year. The 6-foot-9 wing scored in double figures in all but three games last season, including 13 straight to end the year. Moore also led the Aggies in makes and attempts at the free throw line, connecting on 71.7 percent (81-113).
Oliver, a 2015-16 MW Freshman of the Year nominee, appeared in all 38 games last season, starting 33 contests. The 6-foot-8 forward was Nevada’s third-leading scorer, averaging 13.8 points per game. Oliver led the Wolf Pack with 9.1 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per contest. The native of Sacramento, California, led Nevada to a CBI Championship, pouring in 15.3 points and grabbing 9.7 rebounds in the three-game CBI finals series.
2016-17 PRESEASON ALL-MW TEAM
Pos. Player Yr. Team
G Elijah Brown* Jr. New Mexico
G Trey Kell* Jr. San Diego State
W Jalen Moore*** Sr. Utah State
F Cameron Oliver*** So. Nevada
F Tim Williams** Sr. New Mexico
Preseason Player of the Year
Elijah Brown, Jr., G, New Mexico
Preseason Co-Freshmen of the Year
Jalen McDaniels, F, San Diego State
Koby McEwen, G, Utah State
Preseason Newcomer of the Year
Montaque Gill-Caesar, So., G, San Diego State
* member of the 2015-16 All-Mountain West first team
** member of the 2015-16 All-Mountain West second team
*** member of the 2015-16 All-Mountain West third team
From the University of Nevada, Reno