Ole Miss’ Baker wins Gillom Trophy, MSU’s Smith takes Howell

Published 1:37 pm Monday, March 6, 2023

JACKSON — Tolu towered and Angel ascended over the competition to claim the honor as Mississippi’s top college basketball players.

Mississippi State forward Tolu Smith won the Howell Trophy as the state’s best men’s player, and Ole Mis guard Angel Baker won the Gillom Trophy as the best women’s player.

The awards were presented in a ceremony at the Pearl River Resort on Monday.

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Smith, a 6-foot-11 senior, has led Mississippi State to the brink of an NCAA Tournament berth. He averaged 15 points and 8.3 rebounds, both of which led the Bulldogs. Smith’s rebounding average also ranks third in the Southeastern Conference, and he has scored in double figures in 15 consecutive games.

In addition to the Howell Trophy, he was also named to the All-SEC first team on Monday.

Smith is the second consecutive Mississippi State player, and fifth in the last six years, to win the Howell Trophy. He beat out fellow finalists Matthew Murrell of Ole Miss and Austin Crowley of Southern Miss.

Mississippi State (20-11) will play either Florida or Alabama in the SEC Tournament Thursday at noon in Nasvhille.

Baker, meanwhile, was also a key part of the success of Ole Miss’ women’s team. She averaged 15 points and 5.4 rebounds per game to lead the Rebels to a 23-8 record and a likely berth in the NCAA Tournament.

Baker recently surpassed the 2,000-point mark for her career to become one of four Ole Miss players to reach that milestone.

Baker’s selection marked the third year in a row that an Ole Miss player has won the Gillom Trophy. Shakira Austin won it in both 2021 and 2022.

Mississippi State’s Jessika Carter and Southern Miss’ Domonique Davis were the other finalists.

Howell Trophy winners
2023 – Tolu Smith, Mississippi State
2022 – Iverson Molinar, Mississippi State
2021 – Devontae Shuler, Ole Miss
2020 – Reggie Perry, Mississippi State
2019 – Quinndary Weatherspoon, Mississippi State
2018 – Quinndary Weatherspoon, Mississippi State
2017 – Sebastian Saiz, Ole Miss
2016 – Stefan Moody, Ole Miss
2015 – Stefan Moody, Ole Miss
2014 – Jarvis Summers, Ole Miss
2013 – Marshall Henderson, Ole Miss
2012 – Arnett Moultrie, Mississippi State
2011 – Gary Flowers, Southern Miss
2010 – Jarvis Varnado, Mississippi State
2009 – Jarvis Varnado, Mississippi State
2008 – Jamont Gordon, Mississippi State
2007 – Trey Johnson, Jackson State
2006 – Jasper Johnson, Delta State
2005 – Lawrence Roberts, Mississippi State
Gillom Trophy winners
2023 – Angel Baker, Ole Miss
2022 – Shakira Austin, Ole Miss
2021 – Shakira Austin, Ole Miss
2020 – Rickea Jackson, Mississippi State
2019 – Teaira McCowan, Mississippi State
2018 – Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
2017 – Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
2016 – Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
2015 – Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
2014 – Jamierra Faulkner, Southern Miss
2013 – Martha Alwal, Mississippi State
2012 – Veronica Walker, Delta State
2011 – Veronica Walker, Delta State
2010 – Alexis Rack, Mississippi State
2009 – Alexis Rack, Mississippi State
2008 – Jennifer Rushing, Delta State