Kelley L. Cox / USA TODAY Sports

Cal forward Ivan Rabb has been named to the Lute Olson Award Watch List as a national player of the year candidate

Cal forward Ivan Rabb is on the list of 50 players being considered for the Lute Olson National Player of the Year Award.

On Monday, California sophomore forward Ivan Rabb was named to the Lute Olson Award Watch List, a set of 50 players being considered for the annual national player of the year award named after the former Arizona head coach.

The award is presented annually to the Division I player who has played at least two seasons, a prerequisite which Rabb -- who decided to return for his sophomore season -- will have fulfilled by season's end. has already been named a preseason All-American by Blue Ribbon, The Sporting News, the Associated Press and Athlon Sports, and a candidate for the Karl Malone Award, but has not seen action on the practice court -- or in the Bears' preseason tune up against Cal Baptist -- because of an injured foot suffered during a closed scrimmage against St. Mary's.

Rabb played in all 34 games this season, averaging 12.5 points and 28.7 minutes and shooting 61.5% from the field, and led the Bears with 8.6 rebounds per game. Rabb also led the team with 42 blocks. Rabb's 291 boards easily ecclipsed Ryan Anderson’s freshman record of 269.

The Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd alumnus posted 11 double-doubles over the course of his freshman season for the Golden Bears, and over his last five games before the NCAA Tournament, averaged 9.6 rebounds and 15.6 points per game, and was named to the All-Pac-12 Tournament team.

Rabb's usage rate (the percentage of possessions that ended with a score or a turnover by Rabb) was 20% last season, far below the rates of Jaylen Brown (31.5%) and Tyrone Wallace (28.6%).

That will change this year, as the staff has said that the offense will run primarily through Rabb and senior Jabari Bird. The Bears will begin the season on Friday against South Dakota State at 7 p.m., at Haas Pavilion. Top Stories