PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY BRITTANY SCHOCK
Ohio State basketball senior guard William Buford, sophomore forward Jared Sullinger and sophomore guard Aaron Craft were named to the preseason John Wooden Award watch list, according to a Monday athletic department release.
Student-athletes’ eligibility for the Wooden Award is also dependent on their academic performance as players must maintain at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA.
In an email to The Lantern, athletic department spokesman Dan Wallenberg said, “Having our student athletes nominated for the premier award in college basketball is certainly an honor. William, Jared and Aaron have demonstrated the characteristics Wooden exemplified.”
Sullinger is familiar with the Wooden Award proceedings and was a finalist for the award last year. Sullinger averaged 17.2 points per game and 10.2 rebounds per game to help lead the Buckeyes on their most recent NCAA tournament run.
Buford, the lone senior on the Buckeyes’ roster, averaged 14.4 points during the 2010-11 campaign while Craft scored 6.9 points per game and 4.8 assists per game.
Last season, OSU finished with a 34-3 record and claimed both the Big Ten’s regular season and tournament championships. The Buckeyes’ NCAA tournament run came to an end with a 62-60 loss to Kentucky in the Sweet 16.
OSU, which lost its incoming freshman No. 1 recruit LaQuinton Ross after he was ruled academically ineligible on Sept. 26, will tip-off its regular season on Nov. 11 at 9 p.m. against Wright State at the Schottenstein Center.