Blair, Young Pile Up Honors

Sophomore DeJuan Blair and senior Sam Young continue to be lauded for their fine performances this past season for the Pitt men's basketball team.

DeJuan Blair and Sam Young, who were named first- and third-team All-Americans by the Associated Press earlier this week, were selected to the 11-member Wooden All-America squad Wednesday.

Young and Blair became just the third and Pittsburgh players to earn Wooden All-America Team honors. Charles Smith was an All-America honoree in both 1986-87 and 1987-88, and Brandin Knight was picked in 2002-03.

More than 1,000 national sports media members and college basketball experts voted on the team. Voters selected 10 players from a list of 24 finalists and ranked each player on a scale from one to 10. Wooden Award voters were asked to take into account regular-season and postseason performances, as well as character and academic performance.

That means Young and Blair are both finalists for the John R. Wooden Award. Created in 1976, the John R. Wooden Award is the most prestigious individual honor in college basketball. It is awarded to the nation's best player who has proven to his university that he has made progress toward graduation and has maintained a cumulative 2.0 GPA.

The top vote-getters and finalists for the John R. Wooden Award will be invited to Los Angeles next weekend for the Wooden Award gala. The finalists will be announced Monday. The awards ceremony, which will take place at the Los Angeles Athletic Club in Downtown Los Angeles April 10, will include the presentation of the men's and women's Wooden Award winner, the Wooden Award All-America teams and the Legends of Coaching Award.

Along with Blair and Young, the Wooden All-America team includes junior guard Stephen Curry from Davidson, sophomore forward Blake Griffin from Oklahoma, senior forward Tyler Hansbrough from North Carolina, junior forward Luke Harangody from Notre Dame, sophomore guard James Harden from Arizona State, junior guard Gerald Henderson from Duke, junior guard Ty Lawson from North Carolina, junior center Hasheem Thabeet from Connecticut and senior forward Terrence Williams from Louisville.

Pitt and North Carolina are the lone schools with multiple selections.

Panther Digest Top Stories