March 7, 2018
For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Mitch
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First-year phenom leads nation in points, assists
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ST. LOUIS (USBWA) Oklahoma's Trae Young, the nation's leader in points and assists, has been selected by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association to receive the 2017-18 Wayman Tisdale Award as the National Freshman Player of the Year.

The 6-2, 185-pound guard from Norman, Okla., is averaging 27.5 points per game and 8.9 assists per game going into the Sooners' (18-12) Big 12 Conference Tournament opener Wednesday. No player in recorded NCAA history has finished a season leading the country in both scoring and assists. Young has recorded 12 double-doubles (points/assists) this season to go with four 40-point games and nine 30-point games.

This season, Young earned the USBWA's Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week honor in back-to-back weeks in December and was named the Wayman Tisdale National Freshman Player of the Week four times. The Big 12 Conference's Freshman of the Year was a unanimous selection for the All-Big 12 First Team and All-Newcomer Team. In his first season, Young has scored 826 points, the highest-ever total by a Big 12 player in a regular season. In the last 20 seasons, only J.J. Redick of Duke (833 points in 2005-06) reached the 800-point mark during the regular season.

The prolific scorer has also set records passing the ball. His 267 assists lead the nation and make him only the second player in NCAA Division I history to total 800 points and 250 assists in the same season. The assist total is the fifth-most by a freshman in NCAA history and is 21 shy of the NCAA record (288) set by Duke's Bobby Hurley in the 1989-90 season. Young is also five assists shy of tying the Big 12's freshman assist record, set by T.J. Ford of Texas (273 in 2001-02). Oakland's Key Felder (2015-16) is the only other Division I player to record an 800 points/250 assists season since the NCAA began tracking assists in 1983.

Young first drew national attention this season with a 43-point game against Oregon. He shortly followed that with a 26-point, 22-assist game against Northwestern State on Dec. 19, tying an NCAA record for most assists in a game while breaking the school and Big 12 records. He is the fourth player in NCAA history to record 22-or-more assists in a game and the first since Sherman Douglas of Syracuse in 1989. No other freshman has ever recorded 20-or-more assists in a game.

Young will receive the Wayman Tisdale Award at the College Basketball Awards dinner April 9 at the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis, which has partnered with the USBWA on the event. Other awards to be presented that night are the Oscar Robertson Trophy for national player of the year; the Henry Iba Award for national coach of the year. In addition, former Missouri and Hall of Fame coach Norm Stewart and retired referee Ed Hightower each will receive lifetime achievement awards. Reservations to the dinner are now available to MAC members by calling 314-539-4470 and are open to the public through

The USBWA has chosen a national freshman of the year award since the 1988-89 season. It was named in honor of the late Wayman Tisdale in 2011. Tisdale was a three-time USBWA All-American at Oklahoma and the first freshman ever to receive first-team All-America honors from the USBWA. Following a stint on the 1984 U.S. Olympic basketball team, he played 12 seasons in the NBA before retiring in 1997 to focus on a blossoming jazz music career. In March 2007, he was diagnosed with cancer and, following a courageous and difficult battle that included the amputation of his right leg in 2008, he passed away in May 2009.

Notable winners of the USBWA's national freshman of the year award include Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Jason Kidd and Chris Webber. UCLA's Lonzo Ball won the award last season.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.

1989 Chris Jackson, LSU
1990 Kenny Anderson, Georgia Tech
1991 Rodney Rogers, Wake Forest
1992 Chris Webber, Michigan
1993 Jason Kidd, California
1994 Joe Smith, Maryland
1995 None selected
1996 None selected
1997 None selected
1998 Larry Hughes, Saint Louis
1999 Quentin Richardson, DePaul
2000 Jason Gardner, Arizona
2001 Eddie Griffin, Seton Hall
2002 T.J. Ford, Texas
2003 Carmelo Anthony, Syracuse
2004 Luol Deng, Duke
2005 Marvin Williams, North Carolina
2006 Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina
2007 Kevin Durant, Texas
2008 Michael Beasley, Kansas State
2009 Tyreke Evans, Memphis
2010 John Wall, Kentucky
2011 Jared Sullinger, Ohio State
2012 Anthony Davis, Kentucky
2013 Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State
2014 Jabari Parker, Duke
2015 Jahlil Okafor, Duke
2016 Ben Simmons, LSU
2017 Lonzo Ball, UCLA
2018 Trae Young, Oklahoma
2019 Zion Williamson, Duke

Related links:
Wayman Tisdale Award