Turiaf Wooden Award Top 30 Nominee

Feb. 8, 2005

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Gonzaga University senior Ronny Turiaf has been selected to the John R. Wooden Award Mid-Season Top 30 for collegiate basketball's outstanding player of the year.

Turiaf is among the Wooden Award Top 30 for the second straight season, and joins former Bulldogs Matt Santangelo (2000), Casey Calvary (2001), Dan Dickau (2002) and Blake Stepp (2004) as Top 30 nominees. Calvary became the Bulldogs inaugural Top 10 Wooden All-American, Dickau was a member of the Wooden Top 5 All-American team and Stepp was a Top 10 All-American.

In addition to Turiaf, who is averaging 16.3 ppg and 8.9 rpg for the 17-4 Bulldogs, the mid-season list includes 2004 Wooden Award All-Americans Lawrence Roberts (Mississippi State University), John Lucas (Oklahoma State University) and Ryan Gomes (Providence University), as well as a number of outstanding players that were in the running for last year's Wooden Award.

In addition, the mid-season list includes a group of players who were voted to the 2004 Wooden Award ballot, including Travis Diener (Marquette University), Ike Diogu (Arizona State University), Francisco Garcia (University of Louisville), Julius Hodge (North Carolina State University), Wayne Simien (University of Kansas) and Hakim Warrick (Syracuse University).

"The Midseason Selection Committee had an incredibly difficult task this season in narrowing the list to 30 players because there have been so many outstanding individual performers thus far," said Duke Llewellyn, Wooden Award chairman. "We look forward to watching this group of amazing athletes continue to elevate their games as we determine the top candidates for the Wooden Award All-American Team."

Players who do not make the mid-season list are still eligible for the national ballot, which will be selected in March and will consist of approximately 20 players who have proven to their universities that they are also making progress toward graduation and maintaining a cumulative 2.0 GPA. Over 1000 voters, comprised of sports media members and college basketball experts across the nation, will then cast their votes to determine both the ten-member All-American Team as well as the player of the year recipient.

The 2005 award ceremony, which will include the presentation of the Men's and Women's Wooden Award, the Wooden Award All-American Teams, and Legends of Coaching award recipient Jim Calhoun of the University of Connecticut, will be held at The Los Angeles Athletic Club on April 9 and will be broadcast live on a national CBS telecast. The top five male and female finalists will be invited to Los Angeles for the awards ceremony and will receive a contribution from the John R. Wooden Award Scholarship Fund for their university's general scholarship fund.

The Wooden Award Scholarship Fund was established in 2002 by Applied Materials and corporate partners through the California Community Foundation (CCF) to honor Coach Wooden's dedication as an educator and mentor. The Scholarship Fund distributed $15,000 last year to each university represented by a men's and women's Wooden Award All-American Team finalist (for a total of $150,000).

2005 Wooden Award Mid-Season Top 30

Name                 Ht.   Yr.  Pos.    School
Andrew Bogut         7-0   So.  F/C     Utah
Josh Boone           6-10  So.   F      Connecticut
Dee Brown            5-11  Jr.   G      Illinois
Taylor Coppenrath    6-9   Sr.   F      Vermont
Travis Diener        6-1   Sr.   G      Marquette
Ike Diogu            6-8   Jr.   F      Arizona State
Raymond Felton       6-0   Jr.   G      North Carolina
Francisco Garcia     6-7   Jr.   F      Louisville
Ryan Gomes*          6-8   Sr.   F      Providence
Joey Graham          6-7   Sr.   F      Oklahoma State
Justin Gray          6-2   Jr.   G      Wake Forest
Julius Hodge         6-6   Sr.   G      North Carolina State
Jarrett Jack         6-3   Jr.   G      Georgia Tech
Keith Langford       6-4   Sr.   F      Kansas
John Lucas*          5-11  Sr.   G      Oklahoma State
Sean May             6-9   Jr.  F/C     North Carolina
Rashad McCants       6-3   Jr.   F      North Carolina
Gerry McNamara       6-2   Jr.   G      Syracuse
Chris Paul           6-0   So.   G      Wake Forest
J.J. Redick          6-4   Jr.   G      Duke
Lawrence Roberts*    6-9   Sr.   F      Mississippi State
Nate Robinson        5-9   Jr.   G      Washington
Wayne Simien         6-8   Sr.   F      Kansas
Craig Smith          6-7   Jr.   F      Boston College
Salim Stoudamire     6-1   Sr.   G      Arizona
Ronny Turiaf         6-10  Sr.   F      Gonzaga
Hakim Warrick        6-9   Sr.   F      Syracuse
Deron Williams       6-3   Jr.   G      Illinois
Shelden Williams     6-9   Jr.   F      Duke
Kennedy Winston      6-7   Jr.   F      Alabama

*Indicates player was a 2004 Wooden Award All-American



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