Oct. 20, 2011
For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Mitch
12 first-year players highlighted for Freshman of the Year honor
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ST. LOUIS (USBWA) Three Kentucky freshmen are among 12 players announced Thursday by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association as preseason candidates for the Wayman Tisdale Award, honoring the nation's top freshman for the 2011-12 college basketball season.

Selected to the USBWA's National Freshman of the Year Watch List are the Wildcats' Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marquis Teague, all ranked among the top 10 recruits in the country. Davis, a 6-10 forward, is considered by many to be the nation's No. 1 recruit.

Others named to the watch list are Bradley Beal, Florida; Chane Behanan, Louisville; Khem Birch, Pittsburgh; Andre Drummond, Connecticut; Le'Bryan Nash, Oklahoma State; Austin Rivers, Duke; Adonis Thomas, Memphis; Josiah Turner, Arizona; and Cody Zeller, Indiana.

Player, School Pos. Ht. Wt. Cl. Hometown
Bradley Beal, Florida G 6-3 207 Fr. St. Louis, Mo.
Chane Behanan, Louisville F 6-6 245 Fr. Cincinnati, Ohio
Khem Birch, Pittsburgh F 6-9 220 Fr. Montreal, Quebec
Anthony Davis, Kentucky F 6-10 220 Fr. Chicago, Ill.
Andre Drummond, Connecticut C 6-10 270 Fr. Middletown, Conn.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky F 6-7 232 Fr. Somerdale, N.J.
Le'Bryan Nash, Oklahoma State G/F 6-7 230 Fr. Dallas, Texas
Austin Rivers, Duke G 6-4 200 Fr. Winter Park, Fla.
Marquis Teague, Kentucky G 6-2 189 Fr. Indianapolis, Ind.
Adonis Thomas, Memphis F/G 6-6 222 Fr. Memphis, Tenn.
Josiah Turner, Arizona G 6-3 192 Fr. Sacramento, Calif.
Cody Zeller, Indiana F 6-11 230 Fr. Washington, Ind.

The USBWA has chosen a national freshman of the year since the 1988-89 season when LSU's Chris Jackson was the recipient. Other previous winners of the award include Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Jason Kidd and Chris Webber. Last season, Ohio State's Jared Sullinger won the inaugural Wayman Tisdale Award.

The Tisdale Award winner will receive a statuette designed by nationally-recognized sculptor Shan Gray. A permanent Wayman Tisdale Award is on display at the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame.

The late Wayman Tisdale was a three-time USBWA All-American at the University of Oklahoma. Following a stint on the 1984 U.S. Olympic basketball team, he played 12 seasons in the NBA before retiring in 1997 to focus on a blossoming jazz music career. In March 2007, he was diagnosed with cancer and, following a courageous and difficult battle that included the amputation of his right leg in 2008, he passed away in May 2009.

The Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award presented by Devon is produced by Access Sports, an Oklahoma City-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization committed to supporting various charitable causes, including funding prosthetic devices for needy individuals through the Wayman L. Tisdale Foundation, educational scholarships through the U.S. Basketball Writers Association, and funding of youth basketball programs throughout the state of Oklahoma through Wayman's Lightning Basketball League.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-444-4325.

All-Time USBWA National Freshmen of the Year
1989 Chris Jackson, LSU
1990 Kenny Anderson, Georgia Tech
1991 Rodney Rogers, Wake Forest
1992 Chris Webber, Michigan
1993 Jason Kidd, California
1994 Joe Smith, Maryland
1995 None selected
1996 None selected
1997 None selected
1998 Larry Hughes, Saint Louis
1999 Quentin Richardson, DePaul
2000 Jason Gardner, Arizona
2001 Eddie Griffin, Seton Hall
2002 T.J. Ford, Texas
2003 Carmelo Anthony, Syracuse
2004 Luol Deng, Duke
2005 Marvin Williams, North Carolina
2006 Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina
2007 Kevin Durant, Texas
2008 Michael Beasley, Kansas State
2009 Tyreke Evans, Memphis
2010 John Wall, Kentucky
2011 Jared Sullinger, Ohio State