The Bob Cousy Award

With exceptional peripheral vision, large hands, sloping shoulders and extremely sturdy legs, Bob Cousy was an outstanding all-around player. In basketball circles, however, Cousy was best known for his razzle-dazzle ball handling abilities. Nicknamed the "Houdini of the Hardwood" by sports writers, Cousy is considered by many as the best playmaker ever. Cousy had an All-America career at The College of the Holy Cross, leading the Crusaders to three NCAA tournaments and the 1947 title.

After being drafted in 1950 by the Tri-Cities Blackhawks and immediately traded to the Chicago Stags, the unwanted and untested Cousy's rights were drawn out of a hat by the Boston Celtics in a dispersal draft of the Chicago Stags franchise. Cousy's arrival coincided with that of head coach Arnold "Red" Auerbach, whose up-tempo style of coaching suited Cousy's remarkable playmaking talents perfectly. Cousy finished ninth in the league in scoring (15.6 ppg) his first season. It wasn't until midway through his second season that Cousy began to show the type of courtmanship that would make him a featured attraction in NBA arenas across the country. As a "sophomore," Cousy averaged 21.7 ppg, his highest single-season mark. With the addition of fellow Hall of Famer Bill Russell in 1956, the Celtics became a dynasty, winning six championships with the combination of Cousy and Russell. Cousy led the NBA in assists eight consecutive years (1953-60), played in thirteen straight NBA All-Star Games, earned MVP honors in the 1954 and 1957 Games, and racked up career total 16,960 points.

A fierce competitor, Cousy was named to the NBA's 25th and 35th and 50th Anniversary All-Time teams in 1970, 1980 and 1996. After retiring in 1963, Cousy coached Boston College from 1963 to 1969, taking the Eagles to two NCAA tournaments. He also coached the NBA's Cincinnati/Kansas City Royals from 1969 to 1974 and, at age 41, reactivated himself onto the 1969-70 Royals roster, making him the oldest performer in NBA history.

A Basketball Hall of Famer since 1971, Mr. Cousy wanted to continue both his legacy and ensure that the best point guards in the collegiate game are appropriately recognized. Since 2004, the Cousy Award has both recognized some of the games' best players and students.

Past Winners
2024 Winner

Player Name School
Photo of Tristen Newton Tristen Newton UConn

Cousy's Career Highlights

  • The College of the Holy Cross (1946-50)
College Playing Highlights
  • The Sporting News First Team All-America (1950)
  • The Sporting News Second Team All-America (1949)
  • NCAA championship (1947)
  • Two-time All-Conference and All-New England (1949, 1950)
  • Team MVP and leading scorer (1949, 1950)
  • NBA Boston Celtics (1950-63)
  • NBA Cincinnati Royals (1969-70)
Pro Playing Highlights
  • Drafted in 1950 by the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, immediately traded to the Chicago Stags, then drawn by the Boston Celtics in a dispersal draft of the Stags franchise
  • NBA MVP (1957)
  • All-NBA First Team (1952-61)
  • All-NBA Second Team (1962-63)
  • NBA All-Star Game MVP (1954, 1957)
  • Thirteen-time NBA All-Star (1951-63)
  • NBA championships with the Boston Celtics (1957, 1959-63)
  • Led the NBA in assists from 1953-60, including a career high 9.5 per game in 1960
  • Holds NBA record for most assists in one half (19, Feb. 27, 1959 vs. Minneapolis)
  • NBA 25th Anniversary All-Time Team (1970)
  • NBA 35th Anniversary All-Time Team (1980)
  • NBA 50th Anniversary All-Time Team (1996)

Past Winners

Year Player Name School
2024 Tristen Newton UConn
2023 Markquis Nowell Kansas State
2022 Collin Gillespie Villanova
2022 Collin Gillespie Villanova
2021 Ayo Dosunmu University of Illinois
2020 Payton Pritchard University of Oregon
2019 Ja Morant Murray State University
2018 Jalen Brunson Villanova University
2017 Frank Mason III University of Kansas
2016 Tyler Ulis University of Kentucky
2015 Delon Wright University of Utah
2014 Shabazz Napier University of Connecticut
2013 Trey Burke University of Michigan
2012 Kendall Marshall University of North Carolina
2011 Kemba Walker University of Connecticut
2010 Greivis Vasquez University of Maryland
2009 Ty Lawson University of North Carolina
2008 DJ Augustin University of Texas
2007 Acie Law IV Texas A&M University
2006 Dee Brown University of Illinois
2005 Raymond Felton University of North Carolina
2004 Jameer Nelson St. Joseph's University