INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected Penn State guard Jalen Pickett as its Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week for games ending the week of Sunday, Feb. 19.
As the Big Ten Player of the Week, Pickett was nominated for the weekly award, which was chosen by a representative of the USBWA board of directors from a list of Division I conference players of the week. Once again, the USBWA will select a Division I men's National Player of the Week each Tuesday throughout the season. The USBWA has named Oscar Robertson National Players of the Week since the 2009-10 season. Pickett is the first Penn State player to earn this weekly honor.
A 6-4 fifth-year senior from Rochester, N.Y., Pickett began the week last Tuesday with the first 40-point game by a Penn State player since 1961 and just the sixth in school history. His 41 points set a Bryce Jordan Center record and are the most by a Big Ten player this season. In the game, he also surpassed the 2,000-point plateau for his career as the Nittany Lions completed a season sweep of Illinois, 93-81. He also added eight assists and two rebounds.
Five says later in Minneapolis, he scored 32 points, pulled down nine rebounds and had eight assists in 76-69 defeat of Minnesota.
Pickett collected his 700th career rebound in the win over Minnesota, becoming the first Division I men's player in at least the last 37 years to have accumulated marks of 2,000-plus career points, 700-plus career rebounds and 700-plus career assists. His career numbers now stand at 2,054 points, 707 rebounds and 787 assists.
For the week, he averaged 36.5 points per game, 8.0 assists per game and 5.5 rebounds per game while connecting on 9-of-17 three-point field goals and 12-of-13 free throws.
Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation's oldest award and the only one named after a former player.
At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership. The winner of the award will announced at the 2023 Men's Final Four in Houston with the formal presentation to follow at the annual USBWA Awards Luncheon hosted by the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis.
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 the Oscar Robertson Trophy, contact executive director Malcolm Moran at 814-574-1485.