LOS ANGELES – Maryland men’s basketball guard Dez Wells has been named to the John R. Wooden Award Preseason Top 50 as announced today. Wells was chosen through a preseason poll of national college basketball experts.
Created in 1976, the 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 university that he is making progress toward graduation and maintaining a minimum cumulative 2.0 GPA.
The Terps’ leading scorer last season with 13.1 ppg, Wells returns to the Maryland backcourt with a full season of head coach Mark Turgeon’s system under his belt. Wells’ do-it-all ability was on full display Friday against UConn when he scored 13 points and added seven rebounds and six assists.
Wells ia one of eight basketball players from the Atlantic Coast Conference selected to the award list.
The players on the list are considered strong candidates for the midseason list and the official voting ballot, which will consist 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.
Previous winners include such notables as Larry Bird (’79), Michael Jordan (’84), Tim Duncan (’97), Candace Parker (’07 and ’08), Kevin Durant (’09) and Maya Moore of Connecticut (’09 and ‘11).
Since its inception, the John R. Wooden Award has contributed close to a million dollars to universities’ general scholarship fund in the names of the All American recipients. The Award has also sent more than 1,000 underprivileged children to week-long college basketball camps in the Award’s name.
Follow the candidates and get the latest news throughout the season by logging on to www.WoodenAward.com or going to the Wooden Award facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/WoodenAward.