STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State junior guard/forward Jamont Gordon has been named one of the top 50 preseason candidates for the Men's 2007-08 John R. Wooden Award, as announced Wednesday by The Los Angeles Athletic Club's Wooden Award Committee.
Named for the three-time college basketball all-American, 1932 NCAA Player of the Year and 10-time national championship coach at UCLA, the Wooden Award is touted as the nation's most coveted college basketball award.
A native of Nashville and a consensus preseason All-SEC First Team selection this year, Gordon led coach Rick Stansbury's 21-14 Bulldogs and ranked among the SEC's top 10 leaders in scoring (16.0 ppg; 7th in SEC), rebounding (7.1 rpg; 9th) and assists (5.3 apg; 2nd) a year ago as a sophomore. In ranking as the only NCAA Division I player to average 16.0+ points, 7.0+ rebounds and 5.0+ assists per game last season, Gordon rated as the only underclassman to make the 2006-07 Coaches All-SEC First Team.
Hailing as the SEC's No. 2-leading returning scorer behind Tennessee's Chris Lofton and third-leading returning rebounder, Gordon enters his junior campaign 26 points shy of the 1,000-point mark for his career. The former Oak Hill Academy standout also begins 2007-08 ranked ninth on the school's all-time list with 316 career assists. Gordon is averaging 15.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 4.9 assists per contest while having started all 65 games of his two-year MState career.
This preseason, Gordon has been tabbed as a third-team all-American and the nation's No. 3 slasher by Athlon Sports' publication. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound southpaw is also ranked as the SEC's best athlete and best penetrator by Sporting News Yearbooks.
In January, the Wooden Award committee will release the Midseason Top 30 list, followed by the distribution of the national ballot to more than 1,000 voters in early March. The 10-player Wooden Award All-American Team will be announced the Tuesday after the Elite Eight round of the NCAA Tournament is completed.
Most recently for the Bulldogs, 2003-04 SEC Player of the Year and former Memphis Grizzlies forward Lawrence Roberts earned Wooden Award All-American First Team accolades as an MSU junior. A year ago, Kevin Durant of the University of Texas became the first freshman to win the Wooden Award.
Also included on this year's top 50 preseason Wooden Award candidates from the Southeastern Conference are Tennessee's Lofton, Richard Hendrix of Alabama, Vanderbilt's Shan Foster, and Patrick Beverley of Arkansas.
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The Mississippi State women's basketball team received 135 points to finish seventh among league teams in preseason voting by members of the media, the Southeastern Conference announced today.
After winning their seventh NCAA title, Tennessee was selected to win the conference title. The Lady Volunteers earned 28 first-place votes, while LSU received two. Tennessee tallied 358 points, with LSU (252), Georgia (234), Vanderbilt (189), Auburn (176) and Kentucky (145) rounding out the top half of the league.
After the Lady Bulldogs at seventh, archrival Mississippi (107), Arkansas (95), Florida (84), South Carolina (74) and Alabama (30) round out the bottom half of the conference.
Tennessee junior Candace Parker was the overwhelming choice of the media for SEC Women's Basketball Player of the Year with 28 votes. Joining Parker, Humphrey and Fowles on the All-SEC First Team were Auburn's DeWanna Bonner and Tennessee's Alexis Hornbuckle.
The All-SEC Second Team consists of Arkansas senior Lauren Ervin, Florida junior Sha Brooks, Georgia sophomore Ashley Houts, LSU senior Erica White and Vanderbilt junior Christina Wirth.
Points were compiled on a 12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. Each media member also voted for one team as an overall conference champion and a five-player All-SEC Team. Each SEC school selected two media members that cover their team and six additional writers from across the nation were selected by the conference office to form the 30-member voting panel.