A 6-8, 235-pound forward from Chicago, Ill., Parker was a consensus first team All-America selection, the USBWA District III Player of the Year, a first team All-ACC choice and the ACC Rookie of the Year. He was also a finalist for the Oscar Robertson Trophy, John Wooden Award and Naismith Award after leading Duke to a 26-9 overall record, a 13-5 mark in ACC play and an appearance in the ACC Championship game.
Parker led Duke in scoring (19.1 ppg.), rebounding (8.7 rpg.), blocks (1.2 bpg.) and double-doubles (14) while setting or tying Duke freshman records for points (670), points per game, rebounds (306), double-doubles, free throws made (160), free throws attempted (214), dunks (61), double-figure scoring games (33) and 20-point games (18). He became the fourth freshman in ACC history to lead the league in rebounding and the third to top 600 points in his first season.
Also honored at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards were Kansas head coach Bill Self (Wayman Tisdale Humanitarian Award), Creighton forward Doug McDermott (Oscar Robertson Trophy) and Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall (Henry Iba Coach of the Year Award).
The USBWA has chosen a national freshman of the year since the 1988-89 season when LSU's Chris Jackson was the recipient. Other notable winners of the national freshman of the year award include Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Jason Kidd and Chris Webber.
The late Wayman Tisdale was a three-time USBWA All-American at the University of Oklahoma and in 1983 was the first freshman ever to be named a first-team All-American by the USBWA. Following a stint on the 1984 U.S. Olympic basketball team, he played 12 seasons in the NBA before retiring in 1997 to focus on a blossoming jazz music career. In March 2007, he was diagnosed with cancer and, following a courageous and difficult battle that included the amputation of his right leg in 2008, he passed away in May 2009.
The Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award is produced by Access Sports, an Oklahoma City-based 501(c)(3) not-for-profit foundation responsible for creating the Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award. Access Sports produces all events associated with the award, including the annual awards dinner. Proceeds from the activities affiliated with the award are used to support various worthy charitable causes, including providing opportunities for disadvantaged youth to participate in basketball leagues, clinics, and training throughout the state. In addition, Access Sports supports the Wayman L. Tisdale Foundation which helps fund prosthetics for those who cannot afford the cost on their own and may not be covered by insurance.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.