Jalen Smith named semifinalist for Naismith Player of the Year

March 05, 2020 | WNST Staff


COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland sophomore forward Jalen Smith has been named one of ten semifinalists for the 2020 Citizen Naismith Trophy for Men’s Player of the Year, as announced Thursday by the Atlanta Tipoff Club.

Joe Smith (1995) is the only player in Maryland history to win the award. This year’s winner will be announced April 5.

Smith is joined on the list by fellow semifinalists Udoka Azubuike (Kansas), Vernon Carey Jr. (Duke), Devon Dotson (Kansas), Malachi Flynn (San Diego State), Luka Garza (Iowa), Markus Howard (Marquette), Myles Powell (Seton Hall), Payton Pritchard (Oregon) and Obi Toppin (Dayton).

Smith has proven to be one of the most dominant players in the country this season, leading the Big Ten and ranking third nationally with 20 double-doubles. He has also been named a Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award candidate and a Top-20 Wooden Award Late Season candidate.

The Baltimore, Md., native has been particularly impressive in Big Ten Conference play, leading the league in double-doubles (14) and field goal percentage (.564), ranking second in rebounds/g (10.9) and blocks/g (2.3) and fifth in scoring (16.7) and 3-pt field goal percentage (.429).

Smith and the Terps close out the regular season Sunday when they host Michigan on FOX for an 8 pm tip. Maryland will win the Big Ten Conference title with a victory.