Kentucky's Nerlens Noel is among 12 players announced by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association as a mid-season candidate for the Wayman Tisdale Award honoring the nation's top freshman player of the 2012-13 season.
The 6-foot-10 center has emerged as one of the most dominant defensive players in recent memory. The Massachusetts native leads the nation in blocked shots per game at 4.8 and ranks 14th in the country in steals at 2.4 per game. He is also averaging 10.2 points and 9.3 rebounds per game.
Others named to the watch list are Jordan Adams, UCLA; Kyle Anderson, UCLA; Isaiah Austin, Baylor; Anthony Bennett, UNLV; Jahii Carson, Arizona State; Yogi Ferrell, Indiana; Ben McLemore, Kansas; Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA; Glenn Robinson III, Michigan; Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State; Nik Stauskas, Michigan.
Last season, UK's Anthony Davis became the first Wildcat to win the USBWA's Freshman of the Year award, which began in 1988-89 with LSU's Chris Jackson receiving the honor. This is the second year it is named for the late Wayman Tisdale, who was a three-time USBWA All-American at the University of Oklahoma.
Noel on watch list for Tisdale Award
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