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Smith Named to Julius Erving Award Watch List

Nov 4, 2020
Chris Smith (photo by Don Liebig)

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – UCLA senior Chris Smith has been selected as one of 20 players to the watch list for the 2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award, as announced Wednesday by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
 
Smith, a 6-foot-9 guard from Chicago, averaged a team-leading 13.1 points and ranked second on the team in rebounds last season (5.4 rpg). He secured first-team All-Pac-12 acclaim as a junior in 2019-20 and was named the league's Most Improved Player of the Year.
 
Through three seasons in Westwood, Smith has averaged 7.7 points and 3.6 rebounds in 97 career games. Smith, who was born in Chicago and grew up in the Dallas-Forth Worth metropolitan portion of Texas, has shot 43.8 percent from the field in three seasons. Last year, he ranked fifth in the Pac-12 in free throw percentage (84.0). In 18 Pac-12 contests, he ranked among the top 15 in the league in scoring and rebounding (14.6 ppg, 6.1 rpg).
 
Named after Class of 1993 Hall of Fame selection and 16-year professional basketball player Julius Erving, the annual honor is in its seventh year and recognizes the best small forwards in Division I men's college basketball. A national committee of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 20 candidates.
 
College basketball fans are encouraged to participate in Fan Voting presented by Dell Technologies in each of the three rounds. In late January, the watch list of 20 players for the 2021 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award will be narrowed to just 10. In late February, five finalists will be presented to Mr. Erving and the Hall of Fame's selection committee. 
 
The winner of the 2021 Julius Erving Award will be presented on Friday, April 9, 2021, along with the other four members of the Men's Starting Five. Additional position-based awards include the Bob Cousy Point Guard Award, the Jerry West Shooting Guard Award, the Karl Malone Power Forward Award and the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center Award, in addition to the Women's Starting Five.
 
Previous winners of the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award include Saddiq Bey, Villanova (2020), Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga (2019), Mikal Bridges, Villanova (2018), Josh Hart, Villanova (2017), Denzel Valentine, Michigan State (2016) and Stanley Johnson, Arizona (2015).
 
For more information on the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award and the latest updates, log onto www.hoophallawards.com and follow @hoophall and #ErvingAward on Twitter and Instagram. Starting Five Fan Voting presented by Dell Technologies will go live on Friday, November 6.

20121 Julius Erving Award Watch List
Statistics are from the 2019-20 college season

Name School Year Games PPG RPG APG FG Pct.
Derrick Alston Jr. Boise State RS Sr. 32 17.3 5.2 3.1 41.3
Jalen Johnson Duke Fr.
Wendell Moore Duke So 25 7.4 4.2 1.9 41.6
Jayden Gardner East Carolina Jr. 31 19.7 9.2 2.2 52.1
Keyontae Johnson Florida Jr. 31 14.0 7.1 1.6 54.4
Corey Kispert Gonzaga Sr. 33 13.9 4.0 2.1 47.4
Brandon Boston Jr. Kentucky Fr.
D.J. Jeffries Memphis So. 19 10.8 4.3 1.5 51.3
Aaron Wiggins Maryland Jr. 31 10.4 4.9 1.4 37.7
Franz Wagner Michigan So. 27 11.6 5.6 1.0 45.2
Aaron Henry Michigan State Jr. 30 10.0 4.6 2.9 44.1
Ron Harper Jr. Rutgers Jr. 31 12.1 5.8 1.0 45.2
Matt Mitchell San Diego State Sr. 32 12.2 4.8 1.7 46.8
Ziaire Williams Stanford Fr.
Yves Pons Tennessee Sr. 31 10.8 5.4 1.1 48.9
Terrence Shannon, Jr. Texas Tech So. 29 9.8 4.1 1.0 47.0
Chris Smith UCLA Sr. 31 13.1 5.4 1.6 45.8
Timmy Allen Utah Jr. 31 17.3 7.3 3.0 44.1
Jermaine Samuels Villanova Sr. 30 10.7 5.5 2.0 46.4
Sam Hauser* Virginia RS Sr. 34 14.9 6.2 2.4 45.9

*Hauser's statistics are from Marquette in 2018-19.