- Top Male Collegiate Small Forwards Named as Contenders for "Naismith Starting Five" -


February 9, 2023

The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame announced the Top 10 candidates for the 2023 Julius Erving Award.

Named after Class of 1993 Hall of Famer and 16-year professional basketball player Julius Erving, the annual honor in its ninth year recognizes the top small forwards in Division I men's college basketball.

2023 Julius Erving Award Candidates*

Brandon Miller Alabama Keyontae Johnson Kansas State

Baylor Scheierman Creighton Brice Sensabaugh Ohio State

Matthew Cleveland Florida State Kevin Obanor Texas Tech

Julian Strawther Gonzaga Jaime Jaquez Jr. UCLA

Jalen Wilson Kansas Colby Jones Xavier

*Players can play their way onto and off of the list at any point in the 2022-23 season.

Fans can support their favorite players in the remaining rounds by participating in Fan Voting, presented by Dell Technologies, starting Friday, February 10, on The Fan Vote will count as one committee vote during the finalist selection process.

In March, five finalists will be presented to Erving and the Hall of Fame's selection committee. The Selection Committee for the Julius Erving Award is composed of top men's college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers.

The winner of the 2023 Julius Erving Award will be presented on a to be determined date, along with the other four members of the Men's Starting Five. Additional awards being presented include the Bob Cousy Award (Point Guard), Jerry West Award (Shooting Guard), Karl Malone Award (Power Forward) and the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award (Center), in addition to the Women's Starting Five.

Previous winners of the Julius Erving Award are Wendell Moore Jr, Duke (2022), Corey Kispert, Gonzaga (2021), 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).


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