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UA coach, players garner Pac-12 honors

On Monday, the Pac-12 Conference named Arizona head coach Sean Miller its John Wooden Coach of the Year for the 2013-14 men’s college basketball season.

Miller led the fourth-ranked Wildcats to a regular season conference championship, with the team finishing 15-3 in Pac-12 play and 28-3 overall.

Arizona held the no. 1 spot in national polls for eight weeks of the season, before suffering losses to Cal, Arizona State and Oregon. The Wildcats were undefeated on their home court at McKale Center in Tucson and had only two losses heading into their regular season finale against the Oregon Ducks in Eugene.

This is Miller’s second such honor, also garnering the award for his leadership of a 2010-11 Arizona team which captured a regular season conference championship and finished with a 14-4 record against Pac-10 opponents before losing to UConn in the Elite 8 round of the NCAA Tournament.

One of Miller’s star players, junior guard Nick Johnson, was also honored by the conference Monday, being named the Pac-12 Player of the Year.

Johnson averaged 16.1 points per game in 32.5 minutes per game for the Wildcats this season. He added 2.8 assists per game to his exploits. The Gilbert, Ariz. native played in 31 contests for Arizona this season and finished eighth among Pac-12 scorers.

Johnson’s teammate, freshman forward Aaron Gordon, was also named Pac-12 Freshman of the Year on Monday, after his 12.8 PPG and 7.8 rebounds per game averages in 2013-14. Gordon played 30.8 minutes per game for the Wildcats over the course of the season, turning in eight double-doubles.