Mark another preseason watch list down for the West Virginia frontcourt.
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame unveiled its watch list for the 2021 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award on Friday, which is given annually to the best center in college basketball. WVU junior Derek Culver was among 20 candidates named on the watch list.
As a sophomore in 2019-20, Culver was given an All-Big 12 Honorable Mention after he finished the season averaging 10.4 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.
“The final Men’s Starting Five watch list we are revealing is that of the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “Mr. Abdul-Jabbar is unparalleled when it comes to his accomplishments at both the collegiate and professional level. As a strong advocate for education and character, he brings a significant perspective when evaluating talent and we greatly value his involvement.”
Culver is the second Mountaineer named to one of the Basketball Hall of Fame’s watch lists. Oscar Tshiebwe was announced as part of the Karl Malone Award watch list on Thursday, which is given annually to the best power forward in college hoops. Similarly, Culver was also picked as a favorite for the Malone Award by NCAA.com analyst Andy Katz.
“Culver is expected to be one of the most productive players on one of the best teams in the Big 12 this season,” Katz wrote. “He and fellow big man Oscar Tshiebwe will hold down the frontcourt for the Mountaineers.”
The Mountaineers are slated to tip their 2020-21 campaign off against Texas A&M on Nov. 25 in the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.