NC State men's basketball freshman Dennis Smith Jr. was named to the midseason watch list for the Wayman Tisdale Award Monday by the U.S. Basketball Writer's Association (USBWA).
The Wayman Tisdale award is given annually to the top freshmen in college basketball.
Smith has lived up to the preseason billing that saw him named the ACC Preseason Rookie of the Year. Smith currently averages 18.9 points, 6.5 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 2.2 steals per game. He ranks fifth in the ACC in scoring and leads the conference in assists and steals. The Fayetteville, N.C., native is on pace to become the second freshmen in ACC history to lead the conference in assists and steals.
Smith leads all ACC freshmen in scoring, assists, steals, assist-to-turnover ratio (2.18) and minutes played per game (34.0).
Smith is one of three ACC freshmen (Florida State's Jonathan Isaac and Duke's Jayson Tatum) on the 12-member list.
The USBWA has chosen a national freshman of the year since the 1988-89 season. It has been named for former Oklahoma standout Wayman Tisdale for the last seven seasons.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 1,000 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. Balloting for the USBWA's All-America Team, All-District Teams and the association's individual awards will take place in March.