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Nwora Named to Wooden Award Midseason Top 25 Watch List

Jordan Nwora - Photo by Brendon D. Miller - Bluegrass Sports Nation

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – University of Louisville junior forward Jordan Nwora has been named to the John R. Wooden Award® presented by Wendy’s® Men’s Midseason Top 25 announced Wednesday by the Los Angeles Athletic Club.

Chosen by a poll of national college basketball experts based on their performances during the first half of the 2019-20 season, the list comprises of 25 student-athletes who are front-runners for the national player of the year.

Nwora leads the ACC and is 20th nationally in scoring, averaging 20.9 points per game.  His 313 points scored in his first 15 games this season is the most scored by any Louisville player in the last 20 years.  Nwora has scored at least 14 points in 14 of 15 games this season, including nine games scoring 20 or more points.  He is the second-highest rated player in the nation in the KenPom Player of the Year standings.

Nwora became the Cardinals’ 69th career 1,000-point scorer while matching a career-high 32 points with 10 rebounds against Florida State on Jan. 4.  He followed that performance with 19 points, 10 rebounds and four assists against Miami in his last game on Jan. 7, marking his second straight double-double, his fourth this season and 13th in the last two seasons.

The ACC Preseason Player of the Year, Nwora is one of three ACC players on the Wooden list, joining Duke’s Vernon Carey Jr. and Tre Jones.  Nwora is also currently among the ACC leaders in rebounding (7.7 rpg, ninth in the ACC), field goal percentage (.487, fifth), three-point field goal percentage (.437, first) and free throw percentage (.781, seventh).

The players on the list are considered strong candidates for the 2020 John R. Wooden Award Men’s Player of the Year presented by Wendy’s. Players not chosen to the preseason list are still eligible for the Wooden Award™ late season list, and the National Ballot. The National Ballot consists of 15 top players who have proven to their universities that they meet or exceed the qualifications of the Wooden Award. 

Nearly 1,000 voters will rank in order 10 of those 15 players when voting opens prior to the NCAA Tournament and will allow voters to take into consideration performance during early round games. The Wooden Award All American Team™ will be announced the week of the “Elite Eight” round of the NCAA Tournament. The winner of the 2020 John R. Wooden Award will be presented by Wendy’s during the ESPN College Basketball Awards on Friday, April 10, 2020

About the John R. Wooden Award
Created in 1976, the John R. Wooden Award Program hosts the most prestigious honors in college
basketball recognizing The Wooden Award Most Outstanding Player for men and women, The Wooden Award All American Teams for men and women and the annual selection of the Wooden Award Legend of Coaching recipient. Honorees have proven to their university that they meet or exceed the qualifications of the John R. Wooden Award as set forth by Coach Wooden and the Wooden Award Steering Committee, including making progress towards graduation and maintaining at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA. Previous winners include Larry Bird (’79), Michael Jordan (’84), Tim Duncan (’97), Kevin Durant (’07), Candace Parker (’07; ’08), Maya Moore (’09; ’11), Chiney Ogwumike (’14), and last year’s recipients, Sabrina Ionescu of Oregon and Zion Williamson of Duke.

Since its inception, the John R. Wooden Award has contributed nearly one million dollars to the universities’ general scholarship fund in the names of the Wooden Award All American recipients and has sent more than 1,000 underprivileged children to week-long college basketball camps. Additionally, the John R. Wooden Award partners with the Special Olympics Southern California (SOSC) each year to host the Wooden Award Special Olympics Southern California Basketball Tournament. The day-long tournament brings together Special Olympics athletes and Wooden Award All Americans and coaches in attendance. It is hosted at the Los Angeles Athletic Club during the John R. Wooden Award Weekend.

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