On Tuesday, Ron Harper Jr. was named to the John R. Wooden Award watch list. This is the most prestigious award in college basketball given to the most outstanding player in the nation each year.
When Harper Jr. announced his return to Rutgers for the upcoming season, this put the Scarlet Knights back on the map. Leading up to the start of the regular season, the small forward has earned many preseason accolades.
Harper Jr. has been selected to the Big Ten’ Preseason All-Conference Team along with being one of 20 members for the Julius Erving Award watch list, which is given to the nation’s top small forward each year. Now, Harper Jr. can add the Wooden Award watch list to his resume. This award watch list is made up of 50 players and is chosen by a preseason poll of national college basketball experts.
Harper Jr. was named Third Team All-Big Ten last season, as well as First Team All-Met and to the Academic All-Big Ten Team. He averaged 14.9 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game last season. He shot 44.1% from the floor, 31.0% from three-point range and 73.6% from the free throw line. In games in which he grabbed at least seven rebounds, Rutgers went 9-1.
Last season, the Wooden Award was given to Luka Garza of Iowa. Heading into the 2021-2022 campaign, there are 10 names listed to the watch list. Below, you can find the full list of Big Ten athletes selected to the preseason list.
Eric Ayala, Maryland
Kofi Cockburn, Illinois
Andre Curbelo, Illinois
Hunter Dickinson, Michigan
Ron Harper Jr., Rutgers
Caleb Houstan, Michigan
Jaden Ivey, Purdue
Trayce Jackson-Davis, Indiana
E.J. Liddell, Ohio State
Trevion Williams, Purdue
Rutgers will begin the season at home against Lehigh on Wednesday. Tip-off is set for 7 PM ET.