WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — Purdue men’s basketball junior Isaac Haas was 1-of-20 players named to the watch list for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award, given to the nation’s top center. The list was announced today by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
A national committee comprised of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of the 20 candidates. The list will be narrowed down to 10 in mid-February and then five finalists will be selected in March that will be presented to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and the selection committee. The winner of this award will be presented at the third annual ESPN College Basketball Awards Show live from The Novo in Los Angeles, California, on Friday April 7.
This marks the third year for the award, won by Wisconsin’s Frank Kaminsky in 2015 and Utah’s Jakob Poeltl in 2016. Purdue alumnus, and current Dallas Maverick, A.J. Hammons was named 1-of-5 finalists last year for the award.
Haas, a 7-foot-2, 290-pound center from Hokes Bluff, Alabama, averaged 9.8 points per game in just 14.3 minutes per contest as a sophomore. He led the Big Ten a year ago in points / 40 minutes (27.4) and shot almost 60.0 percent from the field (59.4) for the season. During the postseason, he scored 38 points in 47 minutes and shot 16-of-23 (.696) from the field in four games of action.
Haas, Wisconsin’s Ethan Happ and Indiana’s Thomas Bryant are the Big Ten players on the list.
The first chance to see the Boilermakers in action is at Purdue’s annual fan day Saturday, Oct. 22, in Mackey Arena. Fans can receive autographs and get pictures with their favorite Boilermakers beginning at 10:45 a.m. ET, and then are invited to stay and watch Purdue’s first intrasquad scrimmage of the season.
The Boilermakers return three starters and eight letterwinners from last year’s team that posted a 26-9 record and was ranked in the nation’s top 25 all year long. This year’s team is ranked in the top 20 of nearly all preseason polls.