AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn basketball star Bryce Brown is one of 30 players up for the Naismith Trophy, which is given annually to the top player in men’s college basketball.
The Naismith Trophy announced its top 30 players who are in consideration for the award Wednesday morning. Brown is one of just three players on the list from the SEC, joining Alabama’s Collin Sexton and Kentucky’s Kevin Knox.
Brown leads No. 10 Auburn with 16.6 points per game this season. The junior leads the SEC with 81 made 3-point field goals, despite the fact he missed half of a game against Texas A&M and all of a game against Georgia last week with a right shoulder strain.
“My freshman and sophomore year, you know my buckets would come from 3-point, which they mainly are, but I just feel like I keep the defense on their heels because they don’t know if I’m going to get to the rim, pull up from midrange or the 3,” Brown said earlier this month. “So I feel like it makes me an unpredictable player, the fact that I can mix it up and go inside, midrange and three ball.”
Brown is shooting 41.5 percent from 3-point range, which ranks seventh in the SEC among qualified shooters. He has also established himself as Auburn’s top defensive player in its run to a 22-3 record and the top spot in the SEC standings.
“ Bryce, he’s got a great confidence,” Auburn coach Bruce Pearl said earlier this month. “He’s not afraid to fail. Obviously, our team has confidence in him. The fact that he does work so hard defensively and he’s just a stopper… I guarantee you that no matter who I put on him, they’d prefer to be guarded by somebody else. That’s how good of a defender he is.”
The Stone Mountain, Ga., native is probable for Auburn’s game Wednesday night against unranked Kentucky (9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT on ESPN2).
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