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Doug McDermott (in white)
Courtesy: Eric Francis

MBB's Doug McDermott on Naismith Early Season Watch List

ATLANTA, Ga. -- Creighton junior Doug McDermott, who was named a finalist for the award last season, and Indiana sophomore Cody Zeller highlight the 2012-2013 Naismith early season watch list, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced today. McDermott will look to build on a strong sophomore performance, while Zeller enters the season at the helm for the No. 1 preseason-ranked Hoosiers.

The 50-player watch list was compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors, which based its criteria on player performances from the previous year and expectations for the 2012-2013 college basketball season. The Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year presented by AT&T will be awarded on April 7, 2013 in Atlanta.

“This is a terrific time of year, filled with hope and optimism among players, coaches and fans,” said Eric Oberman, executive director of the Atlanta Tipoff Club. “We look forward to seeing all the student-athletes display their talents on the court and showcase themselves as viable Naismith Trophy candidates.”

In late February, the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors will compile a mid-season team of the top 30 players in the nation. Then in March, the Naismith Trophy voting academy will narrow the list to the four finalists.

Other notable Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year alumni include two three-time winners in Bill Walton and Ralph Sampson, Michael Jordan, Kevin Durant and last year’s winner, Anthony Davis of Kentucky. The Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year presented by AT&T is the most prestigious national award presented annually to college basketball’s best player.

McDermott averaged 22.9 points and 8.2 rebounds per game last season, after which he became Creighton's first consensus First Team All-American. He's been tabbed Preseason MVC Player of the Year for the league favorite Bluejays, who tied a school-record with 29 wins last year.

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2012-13 Naismith Trophy Early Season Watch List:
Anderson Kyle Freshman F UCLA
Behanan Chane Sophomore F Louisville
Boynton Kenny Senior G Florida
Brown Lorenzo Junior G North Carolina State
Burke Trey Sophomore G Michigan
Cannan Isaiah Senior G Murray State
Carter-Williams Michael Sophomore G Syracuse
Clarke Rotnei Senior G Butler
Cooley Jack Senior F Notre Dame
Cooper DJ Senior G Ohio
Craft Aaron Junior G Ohio State
Dellavedova Matthew Senior G Saint Mary's
Dieng Gorgui Junior C Louisville
Dixon Jr Michael Junior G Missouri
Franklin Jamaal Junior G San Diego State
Frazier Tim Senior G Penn State
Goodwin Archie Freshman G Kentucky
Harris Elias Senior F Gonzaga
Jackson Pierre Senior G Baylor
Kilpatrick Sean Junior G/F Cincinnati
Leslie CJ Junior F North Carolina State
Lyons Mark Senior G Arizona
Mbakwe Trevor Senior F Minnesota
McAdoo James Michael Sophomore F North Carolina
McCollum CJ Senior G Lehigh
McDermott Doug Junior F Creighton
McGruder Rodney Senior G Kansas State
McLemore Ben Freshman G Kansas
Mitchell Tony Sophomore F North Texas
Moser Mike Junior F UNLV
Muhammad Shabazz Freshman G/F UCLA
Noel Nerlens Freshman F Kentucky
Pangos Kevin Sophomore G Gonzaga
Plumlee Mason Senior F Duke
Porter Otto Sophomore F Georgetown
Poythress Alex Freshman F Kentucky
Pressey Phil Junior G Missouri
Roberson Andre Junior F Colorado
Siva Peyton Senior G Louisville
Smart Marcus Freshman G Oklahoma State
Snaer Michael Senior G Florida State
Stokes Jarnell Sophomore F Tennessee
Thomas Adonis Sophomore F Memphis
Thomas Deshaun Junior F Ohio State
Watford Christian Senior F Indiana
Withey Jeff Senior C Kansas
Wolters Nate Senior G South Dakota State
Young BJ Sophomore G Arkansas
Young Patric Junior C Florida
Zeller Cody Sophomore F Indiana
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