🏀 Jalen Wilson Named a Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Finalist
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Kansas redshirt-junior Jalen Wilson has been named one of five finalists for the 2023 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Wednesday.
Joining Wilson as finalists are Brandon Miller (Alabama), Julian Strawther (Gonzaga), Keyontae Johnson (Kansas State) and Jaime Jaquez Jr. (UCLA). This is the ninth year of the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award.
The unanimous Big 12 Player of the Year and All-Big 12 First Team selection, Wilson leads the Big 12 in scoring at 19.7 points per game, which is 29th nationally. He has two 30-point performances to his credit and 17 games of 20 or more points scored. The Denton, Texas, forward also leads the Big 12 with 8.4 rebounds per game 10 double-doubles. On March 7, Wilson was named All-America First Team by The Sporting News, which is one of the four entities the NCAA uses to determine Consensus All-America.
On nearly every national player of the year watch list, Wilson ranks tied for 31st on the Kansas career scoring list, currently at 1,364 points, and his 764 career rebounds are 15th on the KU list. Wilson’s 26 career double-doubles are ninth on the KU all-time list.
Fans can support their favorite player by participating in Fan Voting starting Friday, March 10, on hoophallawards.com. The Fan Vote will count as one committee vote during the finalist selection process.
This month, the finalists will be presented to West and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee. The Selection Committee for the Jerry West Award is composed of top men’s college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers.
The winner of the 2023 Jerry West Award will be presented on a to be determined date, along with the other four members of the Men’s Starting Five. Additional awards being presented include the Bob Cousy Award (Point Guard), Julius Erving Award (Small Forward), Karl Malone Award (Power Forward) and the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award (Center), in addition to the Women’s Starting Five.
Previous winners of the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award are Johnny Davis, Wisconsin (2022), Chris Duarte, Oregon (2021), Myles Powell, Seton Hall (2020), RJ Barrett, Duke (2019), Carsen Edwards, Purdue (2018), Malik Monk, Kentucky (2017), Buddy Hield, Oklahoma (2016) and D’Angelo Russell, Ohio State (2015).
Ranked No. 3 nationally, Big 12 regular-season champion Kansas (25-6, 13-5) enters the 2023 Big 12 Championship as the No. 1 seed for the 18th time in the 27-year history of the league.
The Jayhawks will face the winner of the No. 8 West Virginia vs. No. 9 Texas Tech game in the quarterfinals on Thursday, March 9, at 2 p.m. (Central) at T-Mobile Center in Kansas City, Missouri. The WVU-TTU contest will be played March 8 at 6 p.m., also at T-Mobile Center.