The NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player was established in 1939 to recognize the top performer during the NCAA Tournament, as determined by the Associated Press. The Most Outstanding Player has traditionally been a member of the championship team, but there have been exceptions to the rule including Houston star Hakeem Olajuwon in 1983. The table below displays every winner since the award’s inception nearly 80 years ago.

Year Player College
2016 Ryan Arcidiacono Villanova
2015 Tyus Jones Duke
2014 Shabazz Napier Connecticut
2013 Luke Hancock Louisville
2012 Anthony Davis Kentucky
2011 Kemba Walker Connecticut
2010 Kyle Singler Duke
2009 Wayne Ellington North Carolina
2008 Mario Chalmers Kansas
2007 Corey Brewer Florida
2006 Joakim Noah Florida
2005 Sean May North Carolina
2004 Emeka Okafor Connecticut
2003 Carmelo Anthony Syracuse
2002 Juan Dixon Maryland
2001 Shane Battier Duke
2000 Mateen Cleaves Michigan State
1999 Richard Hamilton Connecticut
1998 Jeffrey Sheppard Kentucky
1997 Miles Simon Arizona
1996 Tony Delk Kentucky
1995 Ed O’Bannon UCLA
1994 Corliss Williamson Arkansas
1993 Donald Williams North Carolina
1992 Bobby Hurley Duke
1991 Christian Laettner Duke
1990 Anderson Hunt Nevada-Las Vegas
1989 Glen Rice Michigan
1988 Danny Manning Kansas
1987 Keith Smart Indiana
1986 Pervis Ellison Louisville
1985 Ed Pinckney Villanova
1984 Patrick Ewing Georgetown
1983 Hakeem Olajuwon Houston
1982 James Worthy North Carolina
1981 Isiah Thomas Indiana
1980 Darrell Griffith Louisville
1979 Magic Johnson Michigan State
1978 Jack Givens Kentucky
1977 Butch Lee Marquette
1976 Kent Benson Indiana
1975 Richard Washington UCLA
1974 David Thompson North Carolina State
1973 Bill Walton UCLA
1972 Bill Walton UCLA
1971 Howard Porter Villanova
1970 Sidney Wicks UCLA
1969 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar UCLA
1968 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar UCLA
1967 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar UCLA
1966 Jerry Chambers Utah
1965 Bill Bradley Princeton
1964 Mahdi Abdul-Rahman UCLA
1963 Art Heyman Duke
1962 Paul Hogue Cincinnati
1961 Jerry Lucas Ohio State
1960 Jerry Lucas Ohio State
1959 Jerry West West Virginia
1958 Elgin Baylor Seattle
1957 Wilt Chamberlain Kansas
1956 Hal Lear Temple
1955 Bill Russell San Francisco
1954 Tom Gola La Salle
1953 B.H. Born Kansas
1952 Clyde Lovellette Kansas
1951 Bill Spivey Kentucky
1950 Irwin Dambrot City College of New York
1949 Alex Groza Kentucky
1948 Alex Groza Kentucky
1947 George Kaftan Holy Cross
1946 Bob Kurland Oklahoma State
1945 Bob Kurland Oklahoma State
1944 Arnie Ferrin Utah
1943 Kenny Sailors Wyoming
1942 Howie Dallmar Stanford
1941 John Kotz Wisconsin
1940 Marv Huffman Indiana
1939 Jimmy Hull Ohio State

As for this season, the co-favorites at the moment are Gonzaga’s Nigel Williams-Goss and UNC’s Justin Jackson. The table below displays the latest MOP odds from 5Dimes as well as previous odds at Bovada, Heritage, and Sportsbook.

Player School 5Dimes (3/30) Bovada (3/23) Bovada (3/15) Heritage (3/15) Sportsbk (3/15)
Justin Jackson North Carolina +400 +750 +1000 +1000 +1000
Nigel Williams-Goss Gonzaga +400 +800 +1000 +1000 +1500
Joel Berry II North Carolina +550 +2200 +1600 +1600 +1800
Tyler Dorsey Oregon +800 N/A N/A N/A +6000
Sindarius Thornwell South Carolina +800 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Jonathan Williams Gonzaga +800 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Kennedy Meeks North Carolina +800 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Dillon Brooks Oregon +900 +2000 +3300 +3300 +2200
Isaiah Hicks North Carolina +1200 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Jordan Mathews Gonzaga +1300 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Theo Pinson North Carolina +2000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Przemek Karnowski Gonzaga +2000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Jordan Bell Oregon +2000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Luke Maye North Carolina +2500 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Dylan Ennis Oregon +3600 N/A N/A N/A N/A
PJ Dozier South Carolina +5000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Duane Notice South Carolina +5000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Maik Kotsar South Carolina +5000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Chris Silva South Carolina +6000 N/A N/A N/A N/A
V.J. Beachem Notre Dame N/A N/A N/A N/A +6000
Josh Hart Villanova N/A N/A +1000 +1000 +1000
Bonzie Colson Notre Dame N/A N/A +6600 +6600 +4000
Semi Ojeyele SMU N/A N/A +6600 +6600 +2500
London Perrantes Virginia N/A N/A +6600 +6600 +4000
Field N/A N/A N/A N/A +350 N/A
Kris Jenkins Villanova N/A N/A N/A N/A +3000
Frank Mason III Kansas N/A +750 +1000 +900 +1000
Donovan Mitchell Louisville N/A N/A +2200 +2200 +2500
DeAaron Fox Kentucky N/A N/A N/A N/A +2200
Monte Morris Iowa State N/A N/A N/A N/A +4500
Przemek Karnowski Gonzaga N/A N/A N/A N/A +4500
Devonte Graham Kansas N/A N/A N/A N/A +3000
Shake Milton SMU N/A N/A N/A N/A +5000
Johnathan Isaac Florida St N/A N/A N/A N/A +5000
Jock Landale Saint Marys N/A N/A N/A N/A +6000
Dwayne Bacon Florida St N/A N/A +4000 +4000 +4000
Jalen Brunson Villanova N/A N/A N/A N/A +3000
Ethan Happ Wisconsin N/A N/A N/A N/A +6500
Josh Jackson Kansas N/A +1000 +1600 +1600 +1800
Lonzo Ball UCLA N/A +650 +1200 +1200 +2000
Bryce Alford UCLA N/A N/A N/A N/A +3000
Lauri Markkanen Arizona N/A +1500 +1600 +1600 +2500
Derrick Walton Jr. Michigan N/A +1600 +3300 +3300 +4000
Allonzo Trier Arizona N/A +850 +1000 +1000 +1800
Caleb Swanigan Purdue N/A +2000 +3300 +3300 +3500
Malik Monk Kentucky N/A +900 +1400 +1400 +1800
Johnathan Motley Baylor N/A +2800 +5000 +5000 +3500
Jevon Carter West Virginia N/A +4400 +3300 +4000 +4000
KeVaughn Allen Florida N/A +4400 +5000 +5000 +5000
T.J. Leaf UCLA N/A +4400 +1600 +1600 +2500
Luke Kennard Duke N/A N/A +800 +800 +1000
Jayson Tatum Duke N/A N/A +1600 +1600 +1800
Grayson Allen Duke N/A N/A +1200 +1200 +2500
Nazareth Mitrou-Long Iowa St N/A N/A N/A N/A +6500
Quentin Snider Louisville N/A N/A N/A N/A +4000

Our early intriguing pick was Gonzaga’s Przemek Karnowski with the ‘field’ option, and he’s now listed at +2000 on his own. Our simulations have loved Gonzaga from the start of the tournament and that hasn’t changed. While 3 other teammates have better odds than Karnowski, they’ve got a great chance to advance to the title game.

Below was published on Thursday, March 23:

On Wednesday (3/15) morning, Sportsbook.com posted odds for the 2017 Tournament MOP.  It’s important to realize that Sportsbook.com is not considered to be very reputable and they take low limits on these type of prop bets. Later in the day Heritage (a much sharper book) and Bovada (another square book) posted their own MOP odds with a few major discrepancies.

Frank Mason, Josh Hart, Justin Jackson and Luke Kennard (+1000) opened as co-favorites at Sportsbook.com, however, Duke’s Kennard (+800) opened as the sole favorite at Heritage. It was also interesting to see that Heritage listed the field as an option at +350. Bovada listed nearly identical odds to Heritage, but (in a fairly dubious move) didn’t list the field as an option.

Following the first two rounds, Bovada re-opened their MOP odds with UCLA’s Lonzo Ball (+650) listed as the new favorite. These are bizarre odds considering that Bovada lists UCLA at +800 to win the National Championship. These type of props take low limits and often take advantage of casual bettors.

Below was published on March 15, 2017:

In last year’s analysis, I explained that senior guards typically dominate March Madness and that Ryan Arcidiacono was providing value at +9000. That advice proved prophetic when Villanova won the national championship and Arcidiacono was named the Most Outstanding Player over teammate Josh Hart. Unfortunately, Paddy Power hasn’t posted MOP odds and neither Heritage nor Sportsbook.com are offering anybody with those type of long odds.  In fact, some of these players actually have shorter odds to win MOP than their teams have of winning the title.

One player that intrigues me is Przemek Karnowski. Gonzaga (+1000) has the fifth-best odds of winning the national championship and the highest probability (20.6%) according to our bracket simulator. At 7’1″ and 300 pounds, Karnowski (12.6 PPG, 6.0 RPG, and 2.0 APG) is a matchup nightmare and although his odds should be way longer, he’s just one example of a player included in the field at Heritage. At +350, the field appears to be an excellent value.

 

Source: SportsInsights