Nov. 8, 2012
Wooden Award Preseason Watch List
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - With the first game only a day away, Lehigh senior C.J. McCollum received his final and perhaps most prestigious honor heading into the 2012-13 campaign when he was among 50 players named to the Wooden Award Preseason Watch List on Thursday.
The John R. Wooden Award has been distributed since 1977, when UCLA's Marques Johnson captured it. Media members vote on a list of candidates established by the award's national advisory board toward the end of the season. Freshmen and transfers are not eligible for the preseason list, but they can be added to the list as the season progresses and ultimately win the award.
The Wooden Award Preseason Watch List was announced on ESPN.com, where Myron Medcalf said of McCollum: "The Associated Press preseason All-American opened eyes around the country when he dropped 30 points during an upset against Duke in the NCAA tournament. His 113.6 rating was 10th among players who'd used at least 28 percent of their team's possessions in 2011-12."
McCollum continues a string of honors heading into the 2012-13 season, which has included a first-team Preseason All-America selection from both the Associated Press and Sporting News and a spot as a Senior CLASS Award candidate. He was also named a Lute Olson Preseason All-American by College Insider, a fourth-team preseason All-American by CBS Sports and the Patriot League Preseason Player of the Year for the third straight season.
McCollum enters his senior season second in Patriot League history in career scoring, needing only 151 points to break the League mark of 2,224 held by Holy Cross' Rob Feaster (1991-95). McCollum has been a consistent scorer from day one, averaging 19.1 points per game as a freshman, 21.8 as a sophomore and 21.9 a season ago. After leading Lehigh to the Patriot League Championship with an 82-77 win at Bucknell on March 7, the Canton, Ohio native posted 30 points, six rebounds and six assists in an NCAA Tournament second-round win over Duke on March 16. McCollum is a two-time Patriot League Player of the Year and AP Honorable Mention All-American (2010, 2012). He was named ECAC Player of the Year a season ago, winning the honor over players from the ACC, Big East and Atlantic 10. McCollum garnered NABC First Team All-District laurels for a third straight season and was one of only 25 players nationally named a Lute Olson All-American by CollegeInsider.com.
The Wooden Award, presented annually to the outstanding collegiate basketball Player of the Year, was founded prior to the 1976-77 season. The Awards' 26-person blue ribbon National Advisory Board selects the ballot of approximately 20 candidates for the Player of the Year and All-American Team honors. Over 1,000 voters select the Player of the Year and All-American Team members each year. Voters are sportswriters and sportscasters who collectively represent each of the 50 states, with the number of voters from each state being dependent on the state's population. For more information on the Wooden Award, go here
Lehigh will open its season at No. 18/19 Baylor on Friday at 5 p.m. in a game shown on Fox Sports Southwest. Every other Patriot League team will also open its season this weekend. For all of the latest links and information, visit Patriot League Men's Basketball Central