Kansas University senior guard Sherron Collins on Tuesday was named one of five finalists for the John R. Wooden Award, which is presented to college basketball’s player of the year.
Other finalists are: Evan Turner, Ohio State; Wesley Johnson, Syracuse; John Wall, Kentucky and Da‘Sean Butler, West Virginia.
The five will be honored — and the winner revealed — at the 34th Wooden Award Presentation Gala, set for 6:30 p.m., Friday, at the Los Angeles Athletic Club.
Collins on Tuesday also was named winner of the 2010 Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award, presented to the country’s most outstanding player 6-foot or under.
The award, which dates back to 1969, is named in honor of James Naismith’s daughter-in-law. A panel of representatives from the National Association of Basketball Coaches selects the recipient. To earn the award, the recipient must “demonstrate leadership, character, loyalty, all-around basketball ability and excellence in the classroom.”
He’s the first KU player to win the award.
“The Hall of Fame is proud to honor Sherron Collins with the 2010 award,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “The Hall of Fame honors excellence within the game, and Sherron has proven he is one of college basketball’s top players this season.”
The 5-foot-11 Collins, who last weekend was named KU’s first consensus All-American since Wayne Simien (2005), is the winningest player in KU history. He amassed 130 victories in four seasons. UCLA’s Darren Collison won the award last season.
Angelo Chol, a 6-foot-8, 205-pound junior center from San Diego’s Hoover High, has sliced his list of schools to eight, Rivals.com reports. The schools: Kansas, Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Georgetown, North Carolina, UCLA and Washington. He’s eliminated. Arizona State, Wyoming and Virginia.
Final coaches poll
KU finished sixth in the final USA Today/ESPN coaches poll, one slot ahead of Kansas State. Duke, of course, placed first, followed by Butler, West Virginia, Michigan State and Kentucky.
Early look at 2010-11
ESPN’s Dick Vitale revealed his early “top six” picks for the 2010-11 season in a video on ESPN.com. He has Duke winning the title for a second straight season, followed in his preseason poll by Ohio State, Michigan State, Villanova, Purdue and Butler. ... Luke Winn of SI.com has KU ranked No. 11 in his first preseason poll. He taps Duke first and Kansas State fourth.
Syracuse assistant coach Mike Hopkins withdrew his name from consideration for the head coaching post at Charlotte, the Charlotte Observer reported. The paper indicated that Xavier assistant Pat Kelsey is frontrunner. The paper in the past has listed KU assistant Joe Dooley on the 49ers’ wish list.