Gonzaga University junior Kelly Olynyk is one of 12 players selected to the 2013 Oscar Robertson Trophy Midseason Watch list announced Thursday by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association.
Members of the association's board of directors chose the players to be included on the list as contenders for the Oscar Robertson Trophy presented by Aflac.
The award is to be presented to the national player of the year by its namesake at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards on April 15 at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. The Henry Iba Coach of the Year Award and the Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award will also be presented at the gala to be held annually the Monday following the NCAA Men's Final Four.
Olynyk has been an integral part to Gonzaga’s 19-2 start and No. 7 national ranking entering tonight’s game at Loyola Marymount University. The native of Kamloops, British Columbia, is averaging 18.2 ppg, 7.0 rpg and is shooting 65.8 percent from the field (123-for-187) which ranks fourth in the latest NCAA statistics.
Former Bulldog Adam Morrison was a co-winner of the award in 2006 with J.J. Redick of Duke.
While these standout players are the leading contenders to be named to the USBWA's All-America Team and as finalists for the Oscar Robertson Trophy, all Division I players remain eligible for postseason honors from the USBWA. The association will announce its 2013 All-America Team in mid-March. At that time, finalists will also be chosen for the player of the year. Once finalists are announced, the entire USBWA membership will vote for the winner of the Oscar Robertson Trophy.
Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation's oldest award and the only one named after a former player.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season.
Following is the complete watch list:
2013 OSCAR ROBERTSON TROPHY MIDSEASON WATCH LIST
F Anthony Bennett, UNLV (6-8, 240, Fr., Brampton, Ont.)
G Trey Burke, Michigan (6-0, 190, So., Columbus, Ohio)
G Michael Carter-Williams, Syracuse (6-6, 185, So., Hamilton, Mass.)
F Doug McDermott, Creighton (6-8, 225, Jr., Ames, Iowa)
G Ben McLemore, Kansas (6-5, 195, Fr., St. Louis, Mo.)
G Victor Oladipo, Indiana (6-5, 214, Jr., Upper Marlboro, Md.)
F Kelly Olynyk, Gonzaga (7-0, 238, Jr., Kamloops, B.C.)
F Mason Plumlee, Duke (6-10, 235, Sr., Warsaw, Ind.)
G Russ Smith, Louisville (6-0, 165, Jr., Brooklyn, N.Y.)
F Deshaun Thomas, Ohio State (6-7, 215, Jr., Fort Wayne, Ind.)
C Jeff Withey, Kansas (7-0, 235, Sr., San Diego, Calif.)
F Cody Zeller, Indiana (7-0, 240, So., Washington, Ind.)