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Aaliyah Edwards, Nika Mühl among UConn players to earn Big East postseason awards

Two Huskies brought home individual awards while four total landed on an All-Big East team.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

On Thursday, the Big East announced its annual end-of-season awards, which included five UConn women’s basketball players.

Nika Mühl repeated as Big East Defensive Player of the Year while Aaliyah Edwards earned the Big East Most Improved Player award. Edwards, along with Lou Lopez Sénéchal, were unanimous picks for the All-Big East First Team, while Mühl and Dorka Juhász landed on the All-Big East Second Team. Aubrey Griffin received honorable mention honors.

Edwards is the fourth UConn player ever to win a conference most improved player award, joining Mel Thomas (2006), Kelly Faris (2013) and Moriah Jefferson (2015). She’s averaged 16.3 points and 8.8 rebounds per game — which rank fifth and fourth, respectively, in the Big East — along with 11 double-doubles and 12 contests with 20+ points.

As for Lopez Sénéchal, she makes an all-conference first team for the fourth consecutive season, but this time it’s the Big East instead of the MAAC. She’s ready double-figures in all but three games while averaging 15.9 per contest. Edwards and Lopez Sénéchal are the only two UConn players to play in all 31 games this season.

Mühl is just the fifth player in league history to win the award twice and the second Husky to do so, joining Nykesha Sales (1997, 1998). Last season, Mühl became the 11th UConn player to win conference defensive player of the year, joining Sales, Ashley Battle (2003), Faris (2013), Stef Dolson (2014), Kiah Stokes (2015), Jefferson (2016), Gabby Williams (2017), Kia Nurse (2018), Napheesa Collier (2019) and Olivia Nelson-Ododa (2021).

Mühl anchored UConn’s defense, which allowed the league-best 54.2 points per game and picked up 40 steals during the regular season. Her 7.9 assists per game rank second nationally and last game, she broke the Huskies’ single-season record for assists and has 236 on the year. Mühl is one of five finalists for the Nancy Lieberman Award, which goes to the best point guard in the nation. Despite winning Big East Defensive Player of the Year last season, she didn’t make an all-conference team, so this is her first selection.

Joining Mühl on the second team is Juhász, who is currently averaging a double-double with 14.3 points and 10.0 rebounds to go with 11 individual double-doubles. She missed UConn’s regular season finale against Xavier with a sprained ankle but is expected to return for the Big East Tournament.

Griffin is the Huskies’ lone player to earn honorable mention. She’s had a breakout campaign after missing all of last season with a slew of injuries, averaging 12.8 points and 6.8 points per game.

Elsewhere in the conference, Villanova’s Maddy Siegrist won Big East Player of the Year, St. John’s Joe Tartamella picked up coach of the year honors, Georgetown’s Kennedy Fauntleroy is the league freshman of the year while St. John’s Unique Drake earned the sixth-woman of the year award.

UConn won the regular season title and will be the top seed in the Big East Tournament. The Huskies kick off the postseason at Mohegan Sun Arena on Saturday at noon against the winner of Butler and Georgetown.