Top Collegiate Shooting Guards Named to Watch List for the “Naismith Starting 5”
Springfield, Mass. (Oct. 16, 2018) — The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today the 20 watch list members for the 2019 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award and Indiana University freshman guard Romeo Langford is among those listed.
Langford, a 6-6 guard from New Albany, is the 27th former Indiana Mr. Basketball and 21st former McDonald’s All-American to wear the Cream and Crimson. He ranked fourth all-time in Indiana High School basketball history scoring 3,002 points and averaged 28.0 points and 8.5 rebounds in his four seasons as a prep. A two-time prep All-American, Langford was ranked the No. 5 player in the Class of 2018 by ESPN and 247 Sports. He was the lone freshman listed on the 10-member Preseason All-Big Ten team.
Named after Class of 1980 Hall of Famer and 1959 NCAA Final Four Most Valuable Player Jerry West, the annual honor in its fifth year recognizes the top shooting guards in Division I men’s college basketball. A national committee comprised of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 20 candidates.
“The Naismith Starting 5 represents our five positional awards and serves as a tie between the best in college game today and the Hall of Famers who have paved the way,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “Each year, Jerry West has been immensely involved in the process of selecting the student-athlete who wins the award bearing his name and those on this list should be very proud to be in consideration.”
Jerry West attended West Virginia University and averaged 24.8 points and 13.3 rebounds per game in his three varsity seasons. He led his team to the NCAA Championship game in 1959 and was named a consensus All-American in 1959 and 1960. In the summer of 1960, he was co-captain of the U.S. men’s basketball team and won an Olympic gold medal. As a professional player, West played 14 seasons in the NBA with the Lakers making the All-NBA First Team 10 times. West won an NBA championship in 1972 and was named the NBA Finals MVP in 1969 despite his team not winning the championship. In 1996, he was named a member of the NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Team.
By mid-February, the watch list of 20 players for the 2019 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award will be narrowed to just 10. In March, five finalists will be presented to Mr. West and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee. The winner of the 2019 Jerry West Award will be presented at the ESPN College Basketball Awards Show presented by Wendy’s in Los Angeles, CA on Friday, April 12, 2019, along with the other four members of the Naismith Starting 5. Additional awards being presented include the Bob Cousy Point Guard Award, the Julius Erving Small Forward Award, the Karl Malone Power Forward Award and the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center Award. Broadcast information will be released at a later date.
Previous winners of the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award include Carsen Edwards,Purdue (2018), Malik Monk, Kentucky (2017), Buddy Hield, Oklahoma (2016) and D’Angelo Russell, Ohio State (2015).
2019 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award Candidates
Bryce Brown - Auburn
Jarron Cumberland - Cincinnati
Kellan Grady - Davidson
RJ Barrett - Duke
KeVaughn Allen - Florida
Zach Norvell - Gonzaga
Justin Wright-Foreman - Hofstra
Romeo Langford - Indiana
Quentin Grimes - Kansas
Barry Brown - Kansas St.
Tyler Herro - Kentucky
Quinndary Weatherspoon - Mississippi St.
James Palmer Jr. - Nebraska
T.J. Gibbs - Notre Dame
Mustapha Heron - St. John's
Tyus Battle - Syracuse
Jarrett Culver - Texas Tech
Kyle Guy - Virginia
Jaylen Nowell - Washington
Fletcher Magee - Wofford
*Players can play their way onto and off of the list at any point in the 2018-19 season*