Bridges Tabbed as Finalist for Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award
East Lansing, Mich. – Michigan State sophomore men’s basketball player Miles Bridges was named one of five finalists for the 2018 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Wednesday afternoon. Named after Hall of Famer and 11-time NBA All-Star Julius Erving, the annual honor in its fourth year recognizes the top small forwards in Division I men’s college basketball.
A national committee of top college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers narrowed the original watch list of 20 players down to 10 candidates and now just five finalists. This month, the five finalists will be presented to Mr. Erving and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee. The winner of the 2018 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award will be determined by a combination of fan votes and input from the Basketball Hall of Fame’s selection committee. Fans are encouraged to visit www.HoophallAwards.com to cast their votes March 9-23.
The five finalists for the 2018 Julius Erving Award are Kelan Martin (Butler), Miles Bridges (Michigan St.), Keita Bates-Diop (Ohio St.), Mikal Bridges (Villanova), and Trevon Bluiett (Xavier).
This is one of several honors this week for Bridges who is one of 15 players selected to the National Ballot for the John R. Wooden Award®, was named a Second Team All-American by The Sporting News and USA Today on Monday and was selected to the All-District V team on Tuesday by the National Association of Basketball Coaches.
Bridges, who was a unanimous All-Big Ten First Team selection this year, leads Michigan State in scoring with 16.9 points per game, is second on the team with 6.9 rebounds and is third on the team with 2.8 assists per game. He ranks sixth in the Big Ten in scoring, 11th in rebounding and is also third in the league in free throw percentage (88.3 percent).
He is one of only four players in the country averaging at least 16.9 points, 6.9 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 0.8 blocks per game.
Bridges became the 49th player in Michigan State history to pass the 1,000-point mark when he hit a 3-pointer in the first half of the Big Ten Tournament Semifinals against Michigan on Saturday in New York City. He finished with 17 points in the game and has 1,015 points for his career. Bridges is just the fifth player in MSU history to score 1,000 points in two seasons.
Bridges is also one of the 10 finalists for the Citizen Naismith Trophy and is one of 14 players selected to the midseason watch list for the Oscar Robertson Trophy.
The winner of the 2018 Julius Erving Award will be honored at ESPN’s College Basketball Awards presented by Wendy’s in downtown Los Angeles on Friday, April 6, 2018.
Bridges helped Michigan State to the Big Ten Regular Season Championship and a school record 28 wins during the regular season. The Spartans, ranked No. 4 in the country in the Associated Press and No. 5 in the USA Today Coaches poll, are 29-4 overall and posted a 16-2 record in conference play.
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