Andrew Bogut led the nation with 26 double-doubles this season.
March 29, 2005
SALT LAKE CITY - The John R. Wooden Award Committee today announced its All-American team as well as the five finalists who will be invited to Los Angeles for the 29th Annual Wooden Award Ceremony. Andrew Bogut, a 7-foot sophomore center from the University of Utah, was named one of the five finalists.
The trophy presentation for this season's college basketball player of the year will air Saturday, April 9, during a national CBS telecast of the "John R. Wooden Award Show Presented by TIAA-CREF" live from The Los Angeles Athletic Club (LAAC) at 1 p.m. EST.
A panel of over 1,000 voters comprised of sports media members and college basketball experts from around the nation had until 3 p.m. EST on Monday, March 28 to cast their votes for both the 10-member All-American Team and Wooden Award recipient as the most outstanding collegiate basketball player in the United States. In addition to on-court performance, voters were also asked to make their selections based on each candidate's character and academic performance, essential components of an outstanding player in the eyes of Coach John Wooden, the Award's namesake. As a part of the voting process, committee members were also asked to rank their top 10 All-Americans in order of preference, with the top five votegetters nominated as Wooden Award finalists. The Wooden Award opts for the March 28 deadline because it allows voters to evaluate players up until the Final Four has been determined.
The top ten Wooden Award All-Americans, in alphabetical order, are Andrew Bogut, Dee Brown, Francisco Garcia, Sean May, Chris Paul, J.J. Redick, Wayne Simien, Salim Stoudamire, Hakim Warrick and Deron Williams. The 2005 All-American team consists of three seniors, five juniors, and two sophomores. Seven conferences are represented on the All-American squad with the ACC leading the way with three players, followed by the Big Ten with two nominees, and the Big 12, Big East, Mountain West, Pac-10 and Conference USA each accounting for one nominated player. Four Wooden Award All-Americans (Brown, Garcia, May and Williams) have led their respective teams to this Weekend's Final Four in St. Louis.
Additionally, the five finalists for the Wooden Award are listed as follows in alphabetical order: Andrew Bogut, Dee Brown, Sean May, J.J. Redick and Wayne Simien. Bogut led the Mountain West conference in points (20.4) and rebounds (12.2), guiding Utah to a trip to the Sweet 16. Nicknamed "The One-Man Fast Break", Brown was named Big Ten Player of the Year after leading Illinois to the conference championship and the Final Four. May has put forth a monster season that's included leading the Final Four-bound Tar Heels in points (17.1 ppg) and rebounds (10.9 rpg). Duke's Redick averaged a conference-best 21.8 points per game while also finishing the season as the nation's top free throw shooter (94%). Simien averaged a double-double for the entire season (20.8 ppg, 10.3 rpg) while guiding Kansas to a 23-7 record.
"All of these finalists deserve to be recognized for their extraordinary level of play throughout the season," said Richard "Duke" Llewellyn, founder and chairman of the Wooden Award. "We look forward to crowning one of these five players the 2005 Wooden Award winner."
The 2005 award ceremony, which will include the presentation of the Men's and Women's Wooden Award, the Wooden Award All-American Teams, and Legends of Coaching Award recipient Jim Calhoun of the University of Connecticut, will be held at The Los Angeles Athletic Club on April 9, 2005, and will be broadcast live on a national CBS telecast. The top five male and female finalists will be invited to Los Angeles for the awards ceremony and will receive a contribution from the John R. Wooden Award Scholarship Fund for their university's general scholarship fund.
The Wooden Award Scholarship Fund was established in 2002 by Applied Materials and corporate partners through the California Community Foundation (CCF) to honor Coach Wooden's dedication as an educator and mentor. The Scholarship Fund distributed $15,000 last year to each university represented by a men's and women's Wooden Award All-American Team finalist (for a total of $150,000). Additional donations to Applied Materials' John R. Wooden Award Scholarship Fund can be made by contacting the scholarship fund through the CCF (www.calfund.org).
About the Wooden Award
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/her university that he/she is making progress toward graduation and maintaining a cumulative 2.0 GPA. Previous winners include such notables as Michael Jordan (`84), Larry Bird (`79), Tim Duncan (`97), and last year's recipient, Jameer Nelson (`04).