ATLANTA — Creighton junior Doug McDermott, who was named a finalist for the award last season, and Indiana sophomore Cody Zeller highlight the 2012-2013 Naismith early season watch list, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Tuesday.
The 50-player watch list was compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors, which based its criteria on player performances from the previous year and expectations for the 2012-2013 college basketball season. The Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year will be awarded on April 7, 2013, in Atlanta.
Other notable players include Ohio State junior tandem Aaron Craft and Deshaun Thomas, and Murray State senior Isaiah Cannan. Seven freshmen are on the list, including UCLA’s Shabazz Muhammad, who claimed the 2012 Naismith High School Boy’s Player of the Year.
“This is a terrific time of year, filled with hope and optimism among players, coaches and fans,” said Eric Oberman, executive director of the Atlanta Tipoff Club. “We look forward to seeing all the student-athletes display their talents on the court and showcase themselves as viable Naismith Trophy candidates.”
In late February, the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors will compile a mid-season team of the top 30 players in the nation. Then in March, the Naismith Trophy voting academy will narrow the list to the four finalists.
Other notable Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year alumni include two three-time winners in Bill Walton and Ralph Sampson, Michael Jordan, Kevin Durant and last year’s winner, Anthony Davis of Kentucky. The Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year is the most prestigious national award presented annually to college basketball’s best player.
|Lorenzo Brown||Junior||G||NC State|
|Isaiah Cannan||Senior||G||Murray State|
|Jack Cooley||Senior||F||Notre Dame|
|Aaron Craft||Junior||G||Ohio State|
|Matthew Dellavedova||Senior||G||Saint Mary’s|
|Michael Dixon Jr.||Junior||G||Missouri|
|Jamaal Franklin||Junior||G||San Diego State|
|Tim Frazier||Senior||G||Penn State|
|CJ Leslie||Junior||F||NC State|
|James Michael McAdoo||Sophomore||F||North Carolina|
|Rodney McGruder||Senior||G||Kansas State|
|Tony Mitchell||Sophomore||F||North Texas|
|Marcus Smart||Freshman||G||Oklahoma State|
|Michael Snaer||Senior||G||Florida State|
|Deshaun Thomas||Junior||F||Ohio State|
|Nate Wolters||Senior||G||South Dakota State|