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UCLA's Johnson Named to Abdul-Jabbar Award Watch List

Oct 22, 2021
UCLA's Myles Johnson (photo by Jesus Ramirez)

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – UCLA senior Myles Johnson has been named to the 20-person watch list for this season's Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award, presented each year to the nation's best center.
Johnson spent the previous four seasons at Rutgers University in New Jersey and enrolled in the summer of 2021 in UCLA's graduate school of engineering. As a redshirt junior last season, he averaged 8.0 points, 8.5 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game for the Scarlet Knights. Johnson was one of five players to earn Academic All-District honors (presented by CoSIDA) at the conclusion of the season.
Johnson led Rutgers in rebounding (8.5 rpg) and blocks (2.4 bpg) last season. He ranked second on the team in steals (32) and shot 62.8 percent from the field, a single-season percentage that ranks fourth in Rutgers' program history. Johnson finished second in the Big Ten Conference in blocks per game (2.4). In addition, he totaled eight double-doubles.
Johnson has become the fourth UCLA player this week to land on one of the five 20-person positional watch lists. Tyger Campbell was named to the watch list for the Bob Cousy Award (point guard). In addition, Johnny Juzang has been named to the Jerry West Award watch list (shooting guard), and Jaime Jaquez Jr. has been selected to the Julius Erving Award watch list (small forward).
The 2021-22 season will mark the eighth year in which the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award recognizes the nation's top center. The award honors for UCLA standout Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who helped lead the Bruins' program to three consecutive NCAA titles from 1967-1969. A three-time National College Player of the Year selection while at UCLA (then known as Lew Alcindor), Abdul-Jabbar was a six-time NBA Champion, six-time NBA Most Valuable Player, two-time NBA Finals MVP and a 19-time NBA All-Star.
Iowa's Luka Garza was honored as the award recipient in 2020 and 2021.
College basketball fans can participate in fan voting, presented by Dell Technologies, in each of the three rounds. In late January, the watch list of 20 players will be narrowed to 10 and then in late February, to just five. The five finalists for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award will be presented in March 2022, before the Hall of Fame's selection committee, where a winner will be selected.
The winner of this season's award will be presented on a date (to be determined) along with the other four members of the "men's starting five," including the Bob Cousy Point Guard Award, the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award, the Julius Erving Small Forward Award and the Karl Malone Power Forward Award.
For more information on this season's Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award, and all the latest updates, log onto and follow @hoophall and #KareemAward on Twitter and Instagram. The "starting five" fan voting presented by Dell Technologies will go live on Friday, Oct. 22.

2021-22 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award Watch List

Player School Year
Walker Kessler Auburn Sophomore
Nick Muszyinski Belmont Junior
Mark Williams Duke Sophomore
Colin Castleton Florida Senior
Chet Holmgren Gonzaga Freshman
Kofi Cockburn Illinois Junior
David McCormack Kansas Senior
Oscar Tshiebwe Kentucky Junior
Ahsan Asadullah Lipscomb Junior
Qudus Wahab Maryland Junior
Jalen Duren Memphis Freshman
Hunter Dickinson Michigan Sophomore
Armando Bacot North Carolina Junior
Moussa Cisse Oklahoma State Sophomore
Nate Watson Providence Senior
Zach Edey Purdue Sophomore
Osun Osunniyi St. Bonaventure Senior
Myles Johnson UCLA Senior
Fardaws Aimaq Utah Valley Sophomore
Liam Robbins Vanderbilt Senior