ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – University of Connecticut senior point guard Shabazz Napier (Roxbury, Mass) has been named one of 15 finalists for the 2014 Oscar Robertson National Player of the Year Trophy, as announced by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association Thursday.
Napier, who leads the Huskies in points (17.8), rebounds (5.9) and assists (5.5) this season, has also been named a finalist for the Naismith Trophy, Bob Cousy Point Guard of the Year Award, Senior CLASS Award and John Wooden Award. He also leads UConn in steals (1.9), and is attempting to become the first Connecticut player to ever lead a team in points, rebounds and assists through an entire season.
He has earned American Athletic Conference Player of the Week honors four times this season and his 19.7 points a game in conference play is second in the league behind Cincinnati’s Sean Kilpatrick (21.7), who Napier and the Huskies face Saturday. The UConn guard has guided Connecticut to a 22-6 overall record, including two wins over the nationally-ranked Memphis Tigers and a victory against the current No. 1 Florida Gators, a contest in which Napier hit a game-winning shot at the buzzer.
Napier is the only Husky to ever amass both 1,500 points and 500 assists in his career and record two triple-doubles. His 230 steals are the second-most ever for a UConn player, while his 450 free throws are third all-time in program history. Connecticut’s game against the Bearcats Saturday tips off at 12 p.m. at the XL Center and will be broadcasted on ESPN, and can be heard live on the UConn IMG Radio Network.