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Vol. 50, No. 3 • March 2013 • .pdf version
Robertson, Tisdale lists feature Bennett, McLemore
The 12 finalists for the U.S. Basketball Writers Association's Oscar Robertson Award, given to the nation's top player, include two freshmen and pairs of players from both the Indiana Hoosiers and the Kansas Jayhawks.
Anthony Bennett of UNLV and Ben McLemore of Kansas were also named to a 12-man list of finalists for the Wayman Tisdale Award, given to the nation's top freshman.
McLemore was joined by shot-blocking teammate Jeff Withey on the Oscar Robertson list. The Hoosiers' Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller also were named to the list.
Zeller was one of just four players from the USBWA's preseason list of candidates who remained on the midseason list, along with Trey Burke of Michigan, Doug McDermott of Creighton and Deshaun Thomas of Ohio State.
Others named to the watch list included Michael Carter-Williams of Syracuse, Kelly Olynyk of Gonzaga, Mason Plumlee of Duke and Russ Smith of Louisville.
McDermott, a first-team All-American during the 2011-12 season, has been among the nation's scoring leaders, at nearly 24 points per game, and Thomas has been the Big Ten Conference leader, at about 20 ppg. Plumlee has been among the nation's rebounding leaders, at about 11 per game, while also averaging more than 17 ppg. Withey has been among the nation's top four shot-blockers, at more than 4 per game.
McDermott and Burke were named the USBWA Players of the Week. McDermott was honored on Dec. 16 after following up a 30-point effort against Akron with a 34-point game against California. Burke was honored on Jan. 7 after posting 23 points and a career-high four steals against Northwestern and 19 points and a career-high 11 assists against Iowa.
Carter-Williams has led the nation in assists, at about 9 per game, with Burke not far behind at about 7 assists and 18 ppg. Carter-Williams also has been among the national leaders in steals, at about 3 per game, with Oladipo averaging about 2.5 per game. Oladipo and Olynyk have also been among the nation's leaders in shooting percentage, at about 66 percent. Oladipo is also known for his spectacular dunks and his shut-down defense; in a victory over No. 1 Michigan, he was credited with defending four different players and holding them collectively to just four points.
Six freshmen from the preseason Wayman Tisdale candidates remained on the USBWA's midseason list: Bennett, Kyle Anderson of UCLA, Isaiah Austin of Baylor, Shabazz Muhammad of UCLA, Nerlens Noel of Kentucky and Marcus Smart of Oklahoma State.
Newcomers to the list included McLemore, Jordan Adams of UCLA, Jahii Carson of Arizona State, Yogi Ferrell of Indiana, Glenn Robinson III of Michigan and Nik Stauskas of Michigan.
Noel has led all players in blocks at more than 4 per game and has been among the top three freshmen in rebounding and steals. Muhammad, Bennett and Carson have been among the nation's top four freshman scorers, with Bennett also ranking among the top 10 rebounders and Carson among the top 10 freshmen in assists.
The names of the 12 finalists will appear on the ballots for both the Oscar Robertson and Wayman Tisdale awards.
Editor's note: The USBWA board made adjustments to these lists before the balloting began on March 3. There are now 14 finalists for the Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Trophy and eight finalists for the Integris Wayman Tisdale Award. To see the complete release, click here.
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