Missouri Valley Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year
The Larry Bird Missouri Valley Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year is an annual basketball award given to the Missouri Valley Conference's most outstanding player. The award was first given following the 1968–69 season. It was renamed to honor Basketball Hall of Famer Larry Bird, who played at Indiana State from 1977 to 1979 and led the Sycamores to the 1979 NCAA Championship game. Bird won every major player of the year award (including the Naismith and Wooden awards) in 1979.
|Missouri Valley Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year|
|Given for||the most outstanding basketball player in the Missouri Valley Conference|
|Most recent||Marques Townes, Loyola|
Creighton had the most all-time winners with seven, but it left the conference in July 2013 to join the reconfigured Big East Conference. Among schools remaining in the conference beyond 2013, Bradley and Southern Illinois have the most winners, with six apiece. The only current conference member that has never had a winner is Valparaiso, who played its first MVC season in 2017–18. There have never been any ties for the player of the year, but there have been nine repeat winners in the award's history. Of the repeat winners, only Fred VanVleet of Wichita State won in non-consecutive years (2014 and 2016).
|†||Co-Players of the Year|
|*||Awarded a national Player of the Year award: |
Helms Foundation College Basketball Player of the Year (1904–05 to 1978–79)
UPI College Basketball Player of the Year (1954–55 to 1995–96)
Naismith College Player of the Year (1968–69 to present)
John R. Wooden Award (1976–77 to present)
|Player (X)||Denotes the number of times the player has been awarded the MVC Player of the Year award at that point|
Winners by schoolEdit
|School (year joined)||Winners||Years|
|Creighton (1977)[a]||7||1990, 1991, 2002, 2003, 2009, 2012, 2013|
|Bradley (1948)||6||1977, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1996|
|Southern Illinois (1975)||6||1976, 1992, 1995, 2004, 2005, 2007|
|Wichita State (1945)[b]||6||1983, 1984, 1985, 2006, 2014, 2016|
|Drake (1907)||5||1971, 1980, 1981, 1993, 2008|
|Illinois State (1981)||3||1998, 2001, 2017|
|Indiana State (1977)||3||1978, 1979, 2000|
|Northern Iowa (1991)||3||1997, 2010, 2015|
|Tulsa (1935)[c]||3||1969, 1982, 1994|
|Louisville (1963)[d]||2||1974, 1975|
|Loyola (2013)||2||2018, 2019|
|Memphis State (1968)[e]||2||1972, 1973|
|Missouri State (1990)||1||2011|
- Creighton University left in 2013 to join the Big East Conference.
- Wichita State University left in 2017 to join the American Athletic Conference (The American).
- The University of Tulsa left in 1996 to join the Western Athletic Conference, and is now in The American.
- The University of Louisville left in 1975 to become a founding member of the Metro Conference, and is now in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
- Memphis State University, now known as the University of Memphis, left in 1973 and briefly went independent before becoming a founding member of the Metro Conference. The school is now in The American.
- The University of Cincinnati left in 1970 to go independent, and is now in The American.