Blackmon among finalists for Jerry West Award

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North Carolina Indiana Basketball_224406

Indiana’s James Blackmon Jr. reacts after hitting a shot during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against North Carolina, Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016, in Bloomington, Ind. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today the 10 watch list finalists for the 2017 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award.

Named after Hall of Famer and 1959 NCAA Final Four Most Valuable Player Jerry West, the annual honor in its third year recognizes the top shooting guards in Division I men’s college basketball.  A national committee comprised of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 20 candidates in October, which has now been narrowed to just 10.

“As one of the best shooting guards to ever play the game, Jerry West’s drive for perfection is what set him apart,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “With their unwavering dedication to the game, these ten finalists have set themselves apart from this year’s competition as well.”

Jerry West attended West Virginia University and averaged 24.8 points and 13.3 rebounds per game in his three varsity seasons. He led his team to the NCAA Championship game in 1959 and was named a consensus All-American in 1959 and 1960. In the summer of 1960, he was co-captain of the U.S. men’s basketball team and won an Olympic gold medal. As a professional player, West played 14 seasons in the NBA with the Lakers making the All-NBA First Team 10 times. West won an NBA championship in 1972 and was named the NBA Finals MVP in 1969, despite his team not winning the championship. In 1996, West was named a member of the NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Team and in 1979 he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

In March, five finalists will be presented to Mr. West and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee for the 2017 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award.  The winner of the 2017 Jerry West Award will be presented at the ESPN College Basketball Awards Show live from The Novo by Microsoft in downtown Los Angeles on Friday, April 7, 2017. Broadcast information will be released at a later date.

Previous winners of the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award include Buddy Hield, Oklahoma (2016) and D’Angelo Russell, Ohio State (2015). For more information on the 2017 Jerry West Award, log onto www.HoophallAwards.com.– Continued – 2017 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award Finalists

Jacob EvansCincinnati
Marcus FosterCreighton
Luke KennardDuke
Jordan MathewsGonzaga
James Blackmon Jr.Indiana
Peter JokIowa
Devonte’ GrahamKansas
Malik MonkKentucky
Steve VasturiaNotre Dame
Bryce AlfordUniversity of California, Los Angeles

*Players can play their way onto and off of the list at any point in the 2016-17 season*

About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame: Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the city where basketball was invented, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate and high school, for both men and women on the global stage.

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