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by: Kris Gardner, United States Basketball Writers Association member. Credentialed media member since 1997. USBWA approved online journalist. Voter of Lowe's Senior CLASS, Naismith, USBWA, and Wooden awards.
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Basketball Hall of Fame Names Twenty Small Forwards to Watch List for 2021 Julius Erving Award
Starting Five Fan Voting Presented by Dell Technologies to go Live on Friday, November 6
POSTED: November 4, 2020 -- 12:21 p.m. CT
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today the 20 watch list members for the 2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award. Named after Class of 1993 Hall of Famer and 16-year professional basketball player Julius Erving, the annual honor in its seventh year recognizes the top small forwards in Division I men's college basketball. A national committee of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 20 candidates.
"After the abrupt end to last year's season, I know we are all very excited to return to the court and offer these outstanding student athletes the opportunity to shine," said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. "We encourage fans to support their favorite players by participating in the Starting Five Fan Voting presented by Dell Technologies. These esteemed annual awards would not be possible without the support of the fans, Dell Technologies, our knowledgeable selection committee and the awards' namesake Hall of Famers."
Julius Erving attended the University of Massachusetts and averaged 26.3 points and 20.2 rebounds per game, making him one of only six NCAA men's basketball players to average more than 20 points and 20 rebounds per game. After two seasons, Erving made the jump to the American Basketball Association and was the league's most recognizable player when it merged with the National Basketball Association in 1976. During his professional career, Erving won three championships, four most valuable player awards and three scoring titles. In 1996, he was named a member of the NBA's 50th Anniversary All-Time Team.
College basketball fans are encouraged to participate in Fan Voting presented by Dell Technologies in each of the three rounds. In late January, the watch list of 20 players for the 2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award will be narrowed to just 10. In late February, five finalists will be presented to Mr. Erving and the Hall of Fame's selection committee.
The winner of the 2021 Julius Erving Award will be presented on Friday, April 9, 2021, along with the other four members of the Men's Starting Five. Additional awards being presented include the Bob Cousy Point Guard Award, the Jerry West Shooting Guard Award, the Karl Malone Power Forward Award and the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center Award, in addition to the Women's Starting Five.
Previous winners of the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award include Saddiq Bey, Villanova (2020); Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga(2019); Mikal Bridges, Villanova (2018); Josh Hart, Villanova (2017); Denzel Valentine, Michigan State (2016); and Stanley Johnson, Arizona (2015).
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For more information on the 2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award and the latest updates, log onto www.hoophallawards.com and follow @hoophall and #ErvingAward on Twitter and Instagram. Starting Five Fan Voting presented by Dell Technologies will go live on Friday, November 6.
2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award Candidates*
|Derrick Alston Jr.||Boise State|
|Jayden Gardner||East Carolina|
|Brandon Boston Jr.||Kentucky|
|Aaron Henry||Michigan State|
|Ron Harper Jr.||Rutgers|
|Matt Mitchell||San Diego State|
|Terrence Shannon Jr.||Texas Tech|
* - Players can play their way onto and off of the list at any point in the 2020-21 season
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