Indiana Basketball: James Blackmon Jr. named 2017 Jerry West Award Finalist

The Basketball Hall of Fame’s Jerry West Award is handed to the best college basketball player at the shooting guard position. Indiana Basketball’s James Blackmon Jr. is a finalist for 2017.

The first two recipients of the Jerry West Award include New Orleans Pelicans Buddy Hield (2016 – Oklahoma) and the Los Angeles Lakers’ De’Angelo Russell (2015 – Ohio State). Both were NBA lottery picks and among the best players in college basketball.

Indiana’s James Blackmon Jr. has been selected as one of the 10 finalists for the award in 2017. Blackmon has averaged 30.4 min per game with 17.6 points per game, 4.9 rebounds, and shooting 49.6% from the field. Blackmon’s most recent success came against Michigan State, scoring a season high 33 points.

Few are expecting him to win the award, but the honor is worth noting. The company Blackmon is a part of is among the NCAA’s best players. Luke Kennard and Malik Monk are considered the favorites. James Blackmon’s injury diminishes his chance of winning the award. The time table for James Blackmon Jr. is unclear after suffering an injury against Michigan on January 26th.

Here is a list of all the award finalists.

2017 Basketball Hall of Fame’s Jerry West Award – Finalists

James Blackmon Jr. (Indiana)

17.6 PPG, 4.9 RPG, 1.8 APG – 49.6 FG% (Season high – 33 points vs. Michigan State)
Jan 18, 2017; University Park, PA, USA; Indiana Hoosiers guard James Blackmon Jr (second from right) celebrates with teammates after scoring the winning shot during the second half against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Bryce Jordan Center. Indiana defeated Penn State 78-75. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 18, 2017; University Park, PA, USA; Indiana Hoosiers guard James Blackmon Jr (second from right) celebrates with teammates after scoring the winning shot during the second half against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Bryce Jordan Center. Indiana defeated Penn State 78-75. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Marcus Foster (Creighton)

18.2 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 1.8 APG – 48.6 FG% (Season high – 30 points vs. Marquette)
Jan 11, 2017; Omaha, NE, USA;  Creighton Bluejays guard Marcus Foster (0) reacts after scoring against the Butler Bulldogs at CenturyLink Center Omaha. Mandatory Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 11, 2017; Omaha, NE, USA; Creighton Bluejays guard Marcus Foster (0) reacts after scoring against the Butler Bulldogs at CenturyLink Center Omaha. Mandatory Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Luke Kennard – (Duke)

20.2 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 2.5 APG – 54.0 FG% (Season high – 35 points vs. Maine)
Dec 10, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA;  Duke Blue Devils guard Luke Kennard (5) points toward a teammate during a game against the UNLV Runnin' Rebels at T-Mobile Arena. Duke won the game 94-45. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Dec 10, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Duke Blue Devils guard Luke Kennard (5) points toward a teammate during a game against the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels at T-Mobile Arena. Duke won the game 94-45. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Malik Monk (Kentucky)

21.7 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 2.3 APG – 49.7 FG% (Season high – 47 points vs. North Carolina)
Jan 24, 2017; Knoxville, TN, USA; Kentucky Wildcats guard Malik Monk (5) dribbles the ball in the second half against the Tennessee Volunteers at Thompson-Boling Arena. The Volunteers won 82-80. Mandatory Credit: Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 24, 2017; Knoxville, TN, USA; Kentucky Wildcats guard Malik Monk (5) dribbles the ball in the second half against the Tennessee Volunteers at Thompson-Boling Arena. The Volunteers won 82-80. Mandatory Credit: Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports

Devonte’ Graham (Kansas)

13.6 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 4.2 APG – 46.8 FG% (Season high – 21 points vs. Oklahoma State)
Jan 7, 2017; Lawrence, KS, USA;  Kansas Jayhawks guard Devonte’ Graham (4) shoots a lay up as Texas Tech Red Raiders guard Keenan Evans (12) defends during the second half at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks won 85-68. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 7, 2017; Lawrence, KS, USA; Kansas Jayhawks guard Devonte’ Graham (4) shoots a lay up as Texas Tech Red Raiders guard Keenan Evans (12) defends during the second half at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks won 85-68. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Jordan Mathews (Gonzaga)

10.5 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 1.5 APG – 40.4 FG% (Season high – 16 points x4)
Dec 7, 2016; Spokane, WA, USA; Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Jordan Mathews (4) celebrates a three-pointer against the Washington Huskies during the first half at McCarthey Athletic Center. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Dec 7, 2016; Spokane, WA, USA; Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Jordan Mathews (4) celebrates a three-pointer against the Washington Huskies during the first half at McCarthey Athletic Center. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Peter Jok (Iowa)

21.0 PPG, 5.9 RPG, 2.3 APG – 44.0 FG% (Season high – 42 points vs. Memphis)
Jan 12, 2017; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes guard Peter Jok (14) is congratulated coming off the court as assistant coach Kirk Speraw looks on after the game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Iowa won 83-78. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 12, 2017; Iowa City, IA, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes guard Peter Jok (14) is congratulated coming off the court as assistant coach Kirk Speraw looks on after the game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Iowa won 83-78. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Jacob Evans III (Cincinnati)

14.3 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 2.5 APG – 49.3 FG% (Season high – 25 points x2)
Jan 26, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bearcats guard Jacob Evans (1) dunks the ball against the Xavier Musketeers in the second half at Fifth Third Arena. The Bearcats won 86-78. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 26, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bearcats guard Jacob Evans (1) dunks the ball against the Xavier Musketeers in the second half at Fifth Third Arena. The Bearcats won 86-78. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Bryce Alford (UCLA)

16.6 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 2.3 APG – 48.5 FG% (Season high – 37 points vs. Colorado)
Jan 25, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; UCLA Bruins guard Bryce Alford (20) controls the ball against Southern California Trojans guard Jordan McLaughlin (11) during the first half at Galen Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 25, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; UCLA Bruins guard Bryce Alford (20) controls the ball against Southern California Trojans guard Jordan McLaughlin (11) during the first half at Galen Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Steve Vasturia (Notre Dame)

14.1 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 3.3 APG – 44.9 FG% (Season high – 24 points vs. Louisville)
Jan 30, 2017; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish guard Steve Vasturia (32) shoots as Duke Blue Devils forward Harry Giles (1) defends in the first half at the Purcell Pavilion. Duke won 84-74. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 30, 2017; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish guard Steve Vasturia (32) shoots as Duke Blue Devils forward Harry Giles (1) defends in the first half at the Purcell Pavilion. Duke won 84-74. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

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