Posted-February 26th, 2013 2:57 pm
MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin senior forward Jared Berggren has been selected as one of 30 finalists for the 2013 Naismith Award, the Atlanta Tipoff Club has announced. The award is given annually to the college basketball player of the year.
Berggren, who has started all 27 games for the Badgers this season, leads the team in scoring (11.9 ppg) and ranks second in rebounding (7.0 rpg), having posted a pair of double-doubles in Big Ten play. Berggren is one of just three players to rank among the Big Ten’s top 20 scorers and top 10 rebounders.
The senior is also closing in on Rashard Griffith’s career blocks (124) record at Wisconsin, needing just two to tie and three to take the top spot in UW annals. On the season, Berggren ranks second in the Big Ten with 1.9 blocks per game.
This is the third year in a row that Wisconsin has had a player selected as one of 30 finalists for the award as Jon Leuer (2011) and Jordan Taylor (2012) were previously recognized.
The top 30 candidates were selected by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors, which based its criteria on player performances to this point in the 2013 men’s college basketball season. In late March, the Naismith Trophy voting academy will narrow down the list to four finalists. The Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year presented by AT&T will be awarded on April 7, 2013 in Atlanta.
The Badgers have had two players in school history be named a finalist for the award, Devin Harris in 2004 and Alando Tucker in 2007.
Other notable Naismith Trophy alumni include a pair of three-time winners in Bill Walton (1972, 73, 74) and Ralph Sampson (181, 82, 83), Michael Jordan (1984), Kevin Durant (2007) and last year’s winner, Anthony Davis of Kentucky. The Naismith Trophy presented by AT&T is the most prestigious national award presented annually to college basketball’s best player.