Los Angeles (January 22, 2014)— The Los Angeles Athletic Club has announced its Midseason Top 25 today on ESPN. Chosen by the Wooden Award Advisory Board, the list is comprised of 25 student-athletes who are the front-runners for the sport’s most prestigious individual honor based on their play so far this season. ESPNU will follow up at 6pm EST with a half-hour show focusing on the candidates.
The players on the list are considered strong candidates for the official voting ballot, which will consist of approximately 20 top players who have proven to their universities that they are making progress toward graduation and maintaining at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA. However, players not chosen to the midseason list are still eligible for the ballot. The Wooden Award All American Team, consisting of the nation’s top 10 players, will be announced the week of the “Elite Eight” round of the NCAA Tournament. Creighton senior forward Doug McDermott, a Wooden Award All American in 2012 and 2013, looks to become the first three-time selection on the men’s side since North Carolina’s Tyler Hansbrough (2007-09). McDermott is the nation’s No. 2 scorer at 24.9 ppg (through Jan. 19), and averages 7.1 rebounds per game while shooting 50.2% from the field for the 16-3 Bluejays. He is the only returning Wooden All American this season.
Other Midseason Top 25 picks with impressive statistics of note include Kentucky’s Julius Randle, who ranks No. 10 nationally at 10.5 rebounds per game; and two of the nation’s top playmakers, Chaz Williams of Massachusetts (No. 3 in the nation in assists, 7.4 apg), and Kyle Anderson of UCLA (No. 10, 6.6 apg).
Five freshmen were chosen to the list: Tyler Ennis of Syracuse; Aaron Gordon of Arizona; Jabari Parker of Duke; Randle of Kentucky; and Andrew Wiggins of Kansas.
Arizona (Gordon, Nick Johnson), Duke (Parker, Rodney Hood), Michigan State (Adreian Payne, Keith Appling) and Syracuse (Ennis, C.J. Fair) were the only schools with two players named to the Midseason Top 25. The Wildcats, Orangemen, and Spartans are ranked 1-2-3 in this week’s AP Top 25.
In terms of conferences, distribution of players was fairly even atop the top traditional conferences. The ACC had five selections from three schools, followed by the Pac-12 and Big Ten with four selections each, the Big 12 and SEC with three each, The American with two; and the Atlantic 10, Big East, Missouri Valley, Mountain West with one each.
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Midseason Top 25
Randle on Midseason Top 25 for Wooden All American Team
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