Tuesday, March 02, 1999

Martin, Mickeal head All-Conference USA team

Levett earns second-team honor

The Cincinnati Enquirer

Kenyon Martin
Pete Mickeal
        Cincinnati Bearcats juniors Kenyon Martin and Pete Mickeal were among five first-time selections to the All-Conference USA team announced Monday.

        Martin, a 6-foot-9 junior center, and UNC Charlotte guard Galen Young were the only first-team selections who played in the league last season. Mickeal and Houston guard Gee Gervin were in junior college, and DePaul forward Quentin Richardson was a high school senior.

        Guard Melvin Levett was the only other UC player honored. He was chosen to the second team a second consecutive year.

        “I think at the Division I level, that's really special to me, more than high school and junior college,” said Mickeal, who led the league in field-goal shooting and led UC with averages of 14.8 points and 7.2 rebounds. He was the NJCAA player of the year last season. “I've been blessed just to be one of the guys that played on this team.

        “It's hard to come in as a junior college guy. You've got to get accepted by your teammates.”

        Martin was the league's defensive player of the year last season. That award will be announced today in Birmingham, Ala., the site of the Ohio Casualty Group Conference USA Tournament that starts Wednesday afternoon at the Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center.

        “Hopefully, I can reclaim my same honor,” Martin said.

        He admits he “didn't think I was going to get” all-conference after his difficult February, in which he fouled out three times and failed to score in double figures six times in eight games.

        “I don't think there's any question they deserved it,” UC coach Bob Huggins said of his all-league players. “I think Pete's MVP of the league. I think everyone in the last two weeks has seen what he means to us.”

        The player of the year award will be announced Wednesday, along with coach of the year. Richardson is considered to be the favorite.

        Levett was joined on the second team by Southern Mississippi's Neil Reed, Memphis' Omar Sneed, UAB's Fred Williams and South Florida's B.B. Waldon. Louisville's Nate Johnson, Cameron Murray and Alex Sanders joined DePaul's Lance Williams and Houston's Kenny Younger on the third team.

        “It's an honor,” Levett said. “I'd like to make first-team. First is always better than second. But I'll take what I get.”


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