J.T. Tiller was named the Big 12's top defensive player by the Austin American-Statesman
Feb. 18, 2009
Columbia, Mo. - J.T. Tiller earned his first Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year accolade on Wednesday, as Kirk Bohls of the Austin American-Statesman named the Marietta, Ga., native the league's top defender.
Tiller has been a relentless presence in the Tiger backcourt this season, helping Missouri force 280 steals through 26 games, with 52 of those thefts coming from Tiller alone. The 6-foot-3 guard has 14 games with multiple steals this season and has shut down some of the league's top offensive threats, holding Baylor's Curtis Jerrells, Kansas' Sherron Collins, Nebraska's Steve Harley and Texas' A.J. Abrams a combined 38.8 ppg below their season scoring averages.
Tiller also averages better than five deflections a game on the defensive end, a statistic that has helped Missouri hold its last four opponents to an average of just 60.0 points per game, with each resulting in a Tiger victory.
Tiller has also helped the Tiger defense with his outstanding play at the point guard position. Tiller has a team-leading 92 assists and has committed just 42 turnovers on the year for a 2.2-to-1 assist/turnover ratio.
Tiller and No. 10/11 Missouri return to action on Saturday at Colorado. Game time in Boulder is slated for 12:47 p.m. CT.
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