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Ayo Dosunmu selected to All-Big Ten First Team

There’s just something about Illini guards in No. 11.

Evan McClintock | The Champaign Room

High school state champ. Jordan Brand Classic and Iverson Classic attendee. Team USA gold medal winner. Five-star recruit. Big Ten All-Freshmen Team. The Ayo Dosunmu story continues to write itself.

Now, add All-Big Ten First Team to the list. The announcement came Monday afternoon where Dosunmu joined Iowa’s Luka Garza, Michigan State’s Cassius Winston, Penn State’s Lamar Stevens, and Maryland’s Jalen Smith and Anthony Cowan Jr. Dosunmu was the only selection only made by the media.

The Chicago native was the first true freshman to lead the Illini in scoring last year at 13.8 points per game while also collecting four rebounds and dishing out 3.3 assists. As a sophomore, Dosunmu boosted those numbers to 16.6, 4.3, and 3.3, respectively. He posted double figures in scoring in all but four games this season with a career-high 27 coming at Michigan on Jan. 25.

Dosunmu was named Big Ten Player of the Week on Feb. 24 in his return from injury after notching 24- and 18-point performances against Penn State and Nebraska.

The 6-foot-5, 185-pound guard announced his decision to return to Illinois after much NBA Draft speculation. Entering the season, Dosunmu was a projected lottery pick for this summer’s upcoming draft. After his stock dipped a bit in the early going, he’s worked himself back toward the top of some second-round draft boards.

Illinois’ turnaround from worst season in program history to ending a seven-year tournament drought and securing a double-bye in the Big Ten Tournament can be credited to Dosunmu and freshman Kofi Cockburn’s success.