Morrison A Wooden Award Candidate
Aug. 9, 2005
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Gonzaga University junior Adam Morrison has been named to the John R. Wooden Award Preseason Top 50 for the men's basketball 2005-06 Wooden Award All-America team.
The list is comprised of 50 student-athletes who, based on last year's individual performance and team records, are the early frontrunners for college basketball's most coveted trophy. These top 50 candidates are all returning players, although transfers, freshmen and other players who excel throughout the season will be evaluated and considered for both the Midseason top 30 list and the National Ballot.
"With so many players jumping to the next level and so many standout athletes from last year, the committee had a tough time nominating these candidates from such a wide selection of tremendous players," said Duke Llewellyn, Wooden Award chairman. "These preseason selections represent the elite of college basketball, and our entire team at the Wooden Award is excited to see the best players in the nation prove their case as college basketball's player of the year."
Morrison was a West Coast Conference first-team selection and an Associated Press honorable mention All-America pick last year for the 26-5 Bulldogs who advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the seventh straight season.
This is the seventh straight season the Bulldogs have been represented on the Wooden Award list. Dan Dickau became the Bulldogs inaugural Wooden Top 5 All-America selection in 2002, Casey Calvary was the first Bulldog to make the Top 10 All-American squad in 2001 and Blake Stepp was also a Top 10 All-American in 2004.
Duke's J.J. Redick and Illinois' Dee Brown are the sole preseason candidates who were honored last year as members of the 2005 Wooden Award All-American Team. Additionally, Sheldon Williams (Duke) and Craig Smith (Boston College) join Redick and Brown as the only preseason candidates named to last year's official voting ballot. Other preseason candidates that were in the running for last year's Wooden Award include guards Justin Gray (Wake Forest), Chris Hernandez (Stanford), Carl Krauser (Pittsburgh) and Gerry McNamara (Syracuse); and forwards Leon Powe (California), P.J. Tucker (Texas) and Curtis Withers (Charlotte).
Eleven NCAA conferences are represented, including the Big East (nine players), ACC (eight players), Pac 10 (seven players), Big Ten (six players), Big 12 (six players), Atlantic 10 (four players), SEC (four players), Conference USA (two players), Western Athletic Conference (two players), West Coast Conference (one player), and the Missouri Valley Conference (one player).
With more than 90 players receiving at least one vote, no teams stood out with an overwhelming number of preseason nominees. However, several teams had two players nominated, including Boston College, Connecticut, Duke, Michigan State, Stanford, Texas, and Wake Forest. Three of last year's Final Four teams feature representatives on the 2005-06 Wooden Award preseason list, including Michigan State's Paul Davis and Maurice Ager, Louisville's Taquan Dean, and Illinois' Dee Brown.
In mid-January, the Wooden Award committee will release the midseason top 30 on CBS Sports, and on Tuesday, March 28, the 10-player Wooden Award All-American Team will be announced. The 2006 Award ceremony, which will include the presentation of the Men's and Women's Wooden Award, the Wooden Award All-American Teams and the Legends of Coaching Award, will be held at The Los Angeles Athletic Club on April 8, 2006, and will be broadcast live on a national CBS telecast.
About the John R. Wooden Award
Created in 1976, the John R. Wooden Award is the most prestigious individual honor in college basketball. It is bestowed upon the nation's best player at an institution of higher education who has proven to his or her university that he or she is making progress toward graduation and maintaining a cumulative 2.0 GPA. Previous winners include such notables as Michael Jordan ('84), Larry Bird ('79), Tim Duncan ('97) and last year's recipient, Andrew Bogut ('05).
As a part of the John R. Wooden Award, the top five male and female finalists 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. Applied Materials distributed $10,000 last year to each university represented by a men's and women's Wooden Award All-American Team finalist (for a total of $100,000). Additional donations to Applied Materials' John R. Wooden Award Scholarship Fund can be made by contacting the scholarship fund through the CCF (www.calfund.org).
All-American Team - Top 50 Candidates
(Based on a preseason poll. Players listed alphabetically.)
Hassan Adams 6'4" Sr. G Arizona Maurice Ager 6'5" Sr. G Michigan State Josh Boone 6'10" Jr. F Connecticut Brandon Bowman 6'8" Sr. F Georgetown Ronnie Brewer 6'7" Jr. G Arkansas Aaron Brooks 6'0" Jr. G Oregon Dee Brown 5'11" Sr. G Illinois Nick Caner-Medley 6'8" Sr. F Maryland Rodney Carney 6'7" Sr. F Memphis Mardy Collins 6'6" Sr. G Temple JamesOn Curry 6'3" So. G Oklahoma State Chuck Davis 6'7" Sr. F Alabama Glen Davis 6'9" So. F LSU Paul Davis 6'11' Sr. C Michigan State Taquan Dean 6'3" Sr. G Louisville Guillermo Diaz 6'2" Jr. G Miami Jared Dudley 6'7" Jr. F Boston College Jordan Farmar 6'2" So. G UCLA Nick Fazekas 6'11" Jr. F Nevada Daniel Gibson 6'2" So. G Texas Rudy Gay 6'9" So. F Connecticut Justin Gray 6'2" Sr. G Wake Forest Taj Gray 6'9" Sr. F Oklahoma Vincent Grier 6'5" Jr. G Minnesota Dan Grunfeld 6'6" Sr. G Stanford Chris Hernandez 6'2" Sr. G Stanford Jeff Horner 6'3" Sr. G Iowa Jarrius Jackson 6'1" Jr. G Texas Tech Ben Jacobson 6'3" Sr. G Northern Iowa Carl Krauser 6'2" Jr. G Pittsburgh Nana (Pops) Mensah-Bonsu 6'9" Sr. F George Washington Paul Millsap 6'8" Jr. F Louisiana Tech Gerry McNamara 6'2" Sr. G Syracuse Adam Morrison 6'8" Jr. F Gonzaga Steve Novak 6'10" Sr. F Marquette Kevin Pittsnogle 6'11" Sr. C West Virginia Leon Powe 6'8" Jr. F California J.J. Redick 6'4" Sr. G Duke Rajon Rondo 6'1" So. G Kentucky Brandon Roy 6'6" Sr. G Washington Craig Smith 6'7" Sr. F Boston College Steven Smith 6'7" Sr. F LaSalle Curtis Stinson 6'3" Jr. G Iowa State Curtis Sumpter 6'7" Sr. F Villanova Alando Tucker 6'5" So. F Wisconsin P.J. Tucker 6'5" Jr. F Texas Darius Washington 6'2" So. G Memphis Eric Williams 6'9" Sr. C Wake Forest Sheldon Williams 6'9" Sr. F Duke Curtis Withers 6'8" Sr. F Charlotte
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