Pokes Picked Second in Preseason Poll, Ike Named Player of the Year
* University of Wyoming press release
LARAMIE -- The University of Wyoming men's basketball team has been picked to finish second in the Mountain West, as the conference announced its 2022-23 preseason media poll and all-conference team today prior to the start of MW Media Day on Wednesday.
Forward Graham Ike was named the Preseason Player of the Year and earned Preseason All-MW honors alongside guard Hunter Maldonado.
The poll marked the first time the Cowboys have ranked in the top two of the Preseason Poll since the 2002-03 and 2001-02 seasons. The Cowboys Pokes received four first-place votes and 204 total points coming behind only San Diego State.
Ike is the first Cowboy to earn Preseason Player of the Year honors since Larry Nance Jr. did so in 2014-15. He along with Maldonado earned spots on the Preseason All-MW team being the only teammates on the squad.
The Aurora, Colo. native, Ike was a First Team All-MW by the media and Second Team by the coaches. He ranked second in the MW and No. 30 in the nation in points per game with 19.5. He ranked second in the MW and No. 21 in the nation in rebounding at 9.6 per night. He scored in double-figures in all but one game during the season.
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He scored 25 or more points in a game nine times during the season including 4-of-5 games during the opening stretch of conference play. He is one of only two returning players in the NCAA to average over 19 points and nine rebounds per game.
Maldonado, a native of Colorado Springs, Colo. was a First Team All-Mountain West selection averaging 18.5 points per game to go along with 6.3 assists and 5.7 rebounds per night.
He became Wyoming's all-time leader in assists in the closing games of last season, as he ranked No. 5 in the nation in helpers. Maldonado is one of two returning players in the nation to average over 18 points per game and six assists.
San Diego State was picked to win the league with 16 first place votes and 216 points. The Cowboys were picked second followed by Boise State (166 points), Colorado State (156 points) and New Mexico (136) in the top five.
UNLV was picked sixth followed by Fresno State, Utah State, Nevada and Air Force.
Preseason All-MW team included Ike and Maldonado along with Isaiah Stevens of Colorado State, Jamal Mashburn, Jr. of New Mexico and Matt Bradley of San Diego State.
San Diego State’s Darrion trammel was named the Preseason Newcomer of the Year and Joseph Hunter of Fresno State was named the Preseason Freshman of the Year.
2022-23 MOUNTAIN WEST PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH
Rank Team (First-Place Votes) Points
- San Diego State (16) 216
- Wyoming (4) 204
- Boise State 166
- Colorado State 156
- New Mexico 136
- UNLV 110
- Fresno State 101
- Utah State 96
- Nevada 73
- San José State 35
- Air Force 27
2022-23 PRESEASON ALL-MOUNTAIN WEST TEAM
Pos. Name Yr. Team
G Isaiah Stevens Sr. Colorado State
G Jamal Mashburn Jr. Jr. New Mexico
G Matt Bradley Sr. San Diego State
F Graham Ike Jr. Wyoming
G Hunter Maldonado Sr. Wyoming
Preseason Player of the Year
Graham Ike, Jr., F, Wyoming
Preseason Newcomer of the Year
Darrion Trammell, Sr., G, San Diego State
Preseason Freshman of the Year
Joseph Hunter, G, Fresno State