Wooden Watch: Week 11

Story posted February 5, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Adam Sheetz

College basketball is having an extremely entertaining season, and all of the players are leaving it all on the floor in what has been a crazy year.

The Wooden Award is given to the best player in college basketball every year, and this year has a plethora of candidates for the honor. Here’s a look at the top candidates for this year's award.

Luka Garza, C, Iowa

Luka Garza has been unbelievable in his career at Iowa, and this year is no different. The Hawkeye big is averaging 25.9 points and 8.7 rebounds this season. Garza is also doing this extremely efficiently, shooting 59% from the field, 45% from 3 and 71.7% from the free-throw line. Garza was the favorite to win the award before the season began, and his play has only confirmed that he is the runaway favorite to take home the trophy in 2021.

Ayo Dosunmu, G, Illinois

Ayo Dosunmu had a great season last year, and this year he’s taken tremendous strides to improve his game. Dosunmu is averaging 21.2 points, 6.1 rebounds and 4.6 assists and leading the Illini to a great record. Dosunmu is also efficient, shooting 48.5% from the field, 41.1% from 3 and 82.8% from the line.

Jared Butler, G, Baylor

Sometimes the Wooden Award goes to the best player on the best team, and Butler is the best player on the undefeated Baylor Bears. Butler has been unbelievable this year, averaging 17 points, 5.2 assists and 2.4 steals per game. Butler has been extremely efficient for the unbeaten Bears as well, shooting 49.3% from the field and 44.6% from deep. Butler has a strong case for the Wooden Award with his numbers, and his team’s success might push Butler to the top of the list.

James Bouknight, G, UConn

UConn is having a rebirth season in the Big East, and James Bouknight is a huge reason why. Bouknight has been amazing this year, averaging 20.3 points and 5.3 rebounds per game in a tough Big East conference. Bouknight and the Huskies did have to halt their season due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the program, but even with the break, Bouknight has been one of the most improved players in all of college basketball. He’s a serious dark horse pick to come away with the Wooden Award at the end of the year.

Hunter Dickinson, C, Michigan

Michigan is having a phenomenal season and is one of the top teams in college basketball. The biggest surprise for the Wolverines has been the rise of freshman Hunter Dickinson. Dickinson is averaging 15.1 points and 7.2 rebounds for the Wolverines while shooting 68.8% from the field. Dickinson is also becoming a force on the defensive end as well, averaging 1.4 blocks per game and becoming a more polished defender as he gets more playing time. Dickinson is the frontrunner to win Freshman of the Year in the Big Ten and has put his name in the race for the Wooden Award.

 

Adam Sheetz is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email ads360@psu.edu.