Not surprisingly, the preseason watch list for the 2019 Naismith Award did not include any of coach Tad Boyle's Colorado Buffaloes.

But it did include a few players set to visit the CU Events Center this season.

The 50-player watch list for the prestigious Player of the Year honor released Monday featured three Pac-12 players, all of whom will visit Boulder this year. The Pac-12's three nominees was far outpaced by conference front-runners the ACC (10), SEC (nine), and Big Ten (eight). The Big 12, with two fewer teams than the Pac-12, landed six players on the list, as did the 10-team Big East.

Leading the Pac-12 selections was USC senior Bennie Boatwright, who averaged 13.6 points last year before missing the final 13 games because of a knee injury. Also named to the list was Oregon 7-foot-2 freshman Bol Bol and UCLA sophomore guard Kris Wilkes.

Among that trio, Bol visits Boulder first with the Ducks on Feb. 2, followed a month later by UCLA (March 7) and USC (March 9) for the final two games of the regular season.

The watch list also includes former Stanford forward Reid Travis, who joined No. 2 Kentucky as a graduate transfer this season, and South Dakota State senior Mike Daum, who recorded 37 points and 12 rebounds in a double-overtime game at CU last year.


The 50-player preseason Naismith Award watch list will be reconfigured for a midseason top-30 list on Feb. 13. The 10 semifinalists will be revealed March 4 and the four finalists on March 19 ahead of the announcement of the winner on April 7.

Pat Rooney: or