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Franklin on 2012-13 Naismith Early Season Watch List

Jamaal Franklin is on the Naismith early season watch list.
Jamaal Franklin is on the Naismith early season watch list.

Nov. 13, 2012

ATLANTA - San Diego State junior guard Jamaal Franklin is one of 50 players on the 2012-13 Naismith early season watch list, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced today.

The Hawthorne, Calif., native is the first Aztec since Kawhi Leonard in 2010-11 to be named to Naismith early season watch list. Later that season, the future NBA first-round draft pick was named to the mid-season top 30.

Franklin's appointment comes a week after being named to the Wooden Award preseason top 50. The preseason Mountain West Player of the Year is coming off a sophomore campaign that saw him average 17.4 points and 7.9 rebounds. In the season-opening game vs. No. 9 Syracuse, Franklin led the Aztecs with 11 points and eight rebounds.

The 50-player watch list was compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club's Board of Selectors, which based its criteria on player performances from the previous year and expectations for the 2012-13 college basketball season. The Naismith Men's College Player of the Year presented by AT&T will be awarded on April 7, 2013 in Atlanta.

In late February, the Atlanta Tipoff Club's Board of Selectors will compile a mid-season team of the top 30 players in the nation. Then in March, the Naismith Trophy voting academy will narrow the list to the four finalists.

Other notable Naismith Men's College Player of the Year alumni include two three-time winners in Bill Walton and Ralph Sampson, Michael Jordan, Kevin Durant and last year's winner, Anthony Davis of Kentucky. The Naismith Men's College Player of the Year presented by AT&T is the most prestigious national award presented annually to college basketball's best player.