Nowell and Tang named Point Guard of the Year, Coach of the Year

Pointing onto the court, head coach Jerome Tang and senior guard Markquis Nowell talk about the next play. The Wildcats beat UT Rio Grande Valley 93-59 at Bramlage Coliseum on Nov. 7, 2022. (Archive photo by Sarah Anliker | Collegian Media Group)

The Naismith Hall of Fame declared guard Markquis Nowell as the recipient of the Bob Cousy Award for nation’s top point guard and head coach Jerome Tang as the Werner Ladder Naismith National Coach of the Year.

Nowell won the award over fellow finalists: Marquette’s Tyler Kolek, Northwestern’s Boo Buie, Penn State’s Jalen Pickett and Saint Louis’ Yuri Collins.

“I’m honored to receive the Bob Cousy Award as the nation’s top point guard,” Nowell said in a statement from K-State Athletics. “To be mentioned among the best players in the country at my position is truly a blessing. I want to give all the honor and glory to God for giving me the platform to showcase my talents and gifts this season. I’m not here without His grace.”

Nowell averaged 17.6 points, 8.3 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game on the season. His stats jumped in March Madness, averaging 23.5 points, 13.5 assists and 4.0 steals in his four-game tournament run.

Tang was named the Coach of the Year after taking the Wildcats to the Elite Eight in his first year as a head coach. K-State finished with a 26-10 record on the season.

Tang was selected for the award over fellow finalists: Purdue’s Matt Painter, Marquette’s Shaka Smart and Houston’s Kelvin Sampson.

Tang rebuilt the roster after only keeping two players: Nowell, the Bob Cousy Award winner, and forward Ismael Massoud, who now plans to transfer. His biggest transfer commitment was forward Keyontae Johnson from Florida who was named as a Third Team All-American.

“There are so many people to mention who have put me in this position,” Tang said in a statement from K-State Athletics. “I want to thank our players and staff. I can’t begin to express my appreciation to them for all their hard work and sacrifice this season. We started with Markquis [Nowell] and Ish [Massoud] and it grew to 15 players who became brothers on and off the court, enabling us to go from a team picked last in the Big 12 to one who won 26 games and advanced to the Elite Eight. I will always be indebted to them.”

Prior to his season at K-State, Tang spent 19 years at Baylor where he was the associate head coach for the Bears from 2017-2022 that included being on staff for the 2021 National Championship team.

Head coach Jerome Tang encourages players on the court during the last home game of the season. The Wildcats beat the Oklahoma Sooners 85-69 on March 1, 2023. (Archive photo by Avery Johnson | Collegian Media Group)

Nowell finished his Kansas State career with numerous awards and will enter the next step in his basketball career by entering the NBA Draft.

“I can’t thank my teammates and coaches enough for all their hard work and sacrifice,” Nowell said in a statement from K-State Athletics. “It all started with Ish [Massoud] and I, and Coach [Jerome] Tang and his staff were able build a team around us and we became like brothers. We had a great year that I will always remember.

“I also want to thank my family for their sacrifice in helping me become the player and man I am today. Finally, a special shout out to K-State Nation for all their love and support during my career.”