Northern Iowa’s Tuttle worth watching

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Northern Iowa’s senior power forward Seth Tuttle was named the Larry Bird Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year on Tuesday.  Tuttle finished ahead of a talented list of players that included Wichita State’s Fred VanVleet and Ronnie Baker; all three were named First-Team MVC.

This season, Tuttle has averaged averaged 15.6 points, 6.6 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game despite playing on one of the slower-paced teams in the country.  That said, on the next level (NBA) in a faster-paced offensive unit Tuttle’s numbers could reach all-star level.

The accolades may not end with MVC player of the year either.  Do not be surprised to hear his name called to a handful of All-America teams.  He has also been named in the watch list for the Karl Malone Award, which is given to the best power forward in the country.  A dark horse maybe, but Tuttle’s name is even showing up on ballots for the John Wooden award too.

No matter what hardware Seth Tuttle walks away with at the end of the year, be sure to keep your eyes on him and his Panthers going into the NCAA Tournament.  With the No. 2 seed in the MVC tournament, UNI will play the winner of Drake vs Bradley on Friday.  Barring any upsets, we could see round three of Wichita State versus UNI in the MVC title game.  The home team took the win in the regular season series, so on a neutral floor we could have an instant classic on our hands.

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