Burke averaged 19.2 points per game during the regular season, fueling that average with 61 three-pointers and played a vital role in making the Wolverines offense tick as he dished out 212 assists. He also has 51 steals.
Postseason honors are great and all, but it doesn’t necessarily mean the right players always get them.
I’m not saying Burke doesn’t deserve to be the conference’s top player as Michigan wouldn’t be nearly as successful without him running the floor.
But if he truly is the best player in the conference, he will find a way to guide the Wolverines to the Big Ten tournament championship.
Michigan didn’t win a regular-season title. It also didn’t play as well as it could have down the stretch, losing two of its final four games, including one game to Penn State.
Yet, if Michigan is going to go on a run during the conference tournament and take momentum into the NCAA tournament, Burke needs to play like a conference player of the year.
He needs to come through with big game after big game and be the one who puts his teammates in a position to thrive as well.
There is no question that Burke is one of the top players in the league.
But if he truly is the Big Ten Player of the Year, he will lead his team to a championship this week in Chicago.
Brian Lester is a college basketball writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @BLester1993.