The National Association of Basketball Coaches has announced Duke freshman Paolo Banchero as one of 20 watch list candidates for the 2022 NABC Division I Player of the Year award.
The ACC’s Preseason Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year, Banchero enters his rookie campaign as a five-star forward out of Seattle, Wash. He was the No. 3 player in ESPN 100’s rankings for the class of 2021 after a four-year career at O’Dea High School. As a junior, he averaged 22.6 points, 11.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.6 blocks per game and was named the Washington Boys Basketball Gatorade Player of the Year.
In October, Banchero was added to the watch list for the Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year award. He will seek to become the sixth Blue Devil to be named the NABC Player of the Year, following Christian Laettner (1992), Elton Brand (1999), Jason Williams (2001 & 2002), JJ Redick (2006) and Zion Williamson (2019).
Banchero is one of two freshmen included on this year’s preseason watch list along with Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren.
The 2022 NABC Division I Player of the Year will be announced during the week of the 2022 Final Four in New Orleans.
2022 NABC Division-I Player of the Year Watch List
Max Abmas, Oral Roberts (Jr. – G)
Ochai Agbaji, Kansas (Sr. – G)
Paolo Banchero, Duke (Fr. – F)
Buddy Boeheim, Syracuse (Sr. – G)
Marcus Carr, Texas (Sr. – G)
Julian Champagnie, St. John’s (Jr. – G/F)
Kofi Cockburn, Illinois (Jr. – C)
Hunter Dickinson, Michigan (So. – C)
Collin Gillespie, Villanova (Grad. – G)
Chet Holmgren, Gonzaga (Fr. – C)
Jaden Ivey, Purdue (So. – G)
Trayce Jackson-Davis, Indiana (Jr. – F)
Jaime Jaquez Jr., UCLA (Jr. – G/F)
Johnny Juzang, UCLA (Jr. – G)
E.J. Liddell, Ohio State (Jr. – F)
Remy Martin, Kansas (Sr. – G)
Scotty Pippen Jr., Vanderbilt (Jr. – G)
Jahvon Quinerly, Alabama (Jr. – G)
Drew Timme, Gonzaga (Jr. – F)
Trevion Williams, Purdue (Sr. – F)