Nov. 9, 2012
LOS ANGELES - Washington State University men's basketball senior Brock Motum is one of 50 preseason candidates for the 2012-13 John R. Wooden Award, it was announced Thursday.
A native of Brisbane, Australia, Motum was named All-Pac-12 First Team and the league's Most Improved Player his junior year. Motum led the Cougars and the Pac-12 with 18.0 points per game during his junior year, ranking 38th in the country. He ranks fifth on WSU's single season list for scoring with 613 which he compiled during the 2011-12 season.
Motum is the second Cougar in three seasons to make the list, as Klay Thompson was named to the preseason top-50 prior to the 2010-11 season. Before that, Derrick Low and Kyle Weaver were both named to the preseason top-50 for the 2007-08 season. Thompson went on to make the midseason top-30 cut in 2010-11, as did Low in 2007-08.
This season's preseason list contains student-athletes from 16 different conferences, including four from the Pac-12 Conference. Motum is joined by André Roberson (Colorado), Allen Crabbe (California), and Solomon Hill (Arizona).
The Big Ten leads the way with nine student-athletes represented, followed by the Big East (seven), SEC (six), ACC (six), Big 12(five), Pac 12 (four), West Coast (three) Mountain West (two) and Conference USA, Horizon League, Patriot League, Missouri Valley, Ohio Valley, Sun Belt, Mid-America, and Summit League with one apiece.
Eight student-athletes return to the preseason top 50, including Allen Crabbe (California), Aaron Craft (Ohio State), Tim Hardaway, Jr. (Michigan), Elias Harris (Gonzaga), Ray McCallum (Detroit), Doug McDermott (Creighton), Peyton Siva (Louisville), and Patric Young (Florida).
Transfers, freshmen and medical redshirts are not eligible for the Preseason Top 50. The players on the list are considered strong candidates for the midseason list and the official voting ballot, both of which are open to freshman and transfer students. The National Ballot consists of approximately 20 top players who have proven to their universities that they are also making progress toward graduation and maintaining at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA. The Wooden Award All American Team, consisting of the nation's top 10 players, will be announced the week of the "Elite Eight" round of the NCAA Tournament.
The 37th annual Wooden Award ceremony will honor the Men's and Women's Wooden Award winners, and will include the presentation of the Wooden Award All American Teams and the Legends of Coaching Award, which in 2013 will go to Kansas Head Coach Bill Self. The event will take place the weekend of April 12-13, 2013.
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 minimum cumulative 2.0 grade point average. Previous winners include such notables as Larry Bird ('79), Michael Jordan ('84), Tim Duncan ('97), Blake Griffin ('09) and Maya Moore of Connecticut ('09). Ohio State's Evan Turner and Connecticut's Tina Charles won the Award in 2010. Kentucky freshman Anthony Davis won the men's Award in 2012.