Dienhart: Wooden Award watch list missing names

Dienhart: Wooden Award watch list missing names

The midseason John Wooden Award watch Top 25 list is out. This is a big deal, as the Wooden often is considered to be the premier national player of the year honor.

Here’s the full list. Four Big Ten players made the cut:

  • Michigan State’s Keith Appling
  • Ohio State’s Aaron Craft
  • Wisconsin’s Sam Dekker
  • Michigan State’s Adreian Payne

Some interesting choices there, to say the least. Craft hasn’t played like one of the nation’s best players. Does he deserve to be on here? Nope. Payne has missed four games with a foot injury. And MSU hasn’t lost without him. Dekker is 16th in the Big Ten in scoring and 12th in rebounding. Appling is a no-doubter on this list.

But there are several worthy Big Ten names missing here. Where is Michigan’s Nik Stauskas, the Big Ten’s No. 2 scorer and best shooter? What about Gary Harris, the top player on what may be the Big Ten’s best team? He also paces the league in scoring. No doubt, Iowa’s Devyn Marble needs to be included. He’s the driving force behind the Hawkeyes’ rise to national prominence.

The good news: This is only a midseason list and any player can play his way onto future lists. Remember, one year ago, Indiana’s Victor Oladipo didn’t make the midseason cut. He finished as a first-team All-America.

About Tom Dienhart BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at btn.com/tomdienhart, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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