EVANS NAMED USBWA NATIONAL FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR; TIGER GUARD IS FIRST CONSENSUS NATIONAL FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR IN SCHOOL HISTORY
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - University of Memphis' Tyreke Evans has been named the 2008-09 U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) National Freshman of the Year, the organization announced Wednesday. Evans, who was a unanimous choice for this year's honor, is the first player in Tiger history to receive the USBWA National Freshman of Year award.
For Evans, it is his fourth National Freshman of the Year award, making him the consensus National Freshman of the Year. He also received the National Freshman of the Year accolade from The Sporting News, CBSSports.com and FoxSports.com. The Chester, Pa., native is the first freshman in Tiger basketball history to earn consensus National Freshman of Year distinction.
The USBWA began presenting a National Freshman of the Year award in the 1988-89 season when LSU's Chris Jackson was named the first winner. Kansas State's Michael Beasley was the USBWA National Freshman of the Year recipient a year ago.
Evans is also a finalist for the 2008-09 Wooden Award and Oscar Robertson Trophy - both are National Player of the Year honors. He is the only freshman to be listed among the finalists for both awards.
The awards keep piling up for the 6-foot-6 guard. Evans was named the Conference USA Freshman of the Year and earned All-C-USA first team accolades. Evans was also selected to the USBWA All-District 4 Team and the NABC All-District 11 first team.
The Sporting News, CBSSports.com and FoxSports.com selected him to its Freshman All-America first teams. Sports Illustrated and CBSSports.com also named Evans an All-America third team.
Evans, the 2009 C-USA Tournament MVP, leads the Tigers in scoring (16.6 ppg) and steals (75). He is averaging 5.4 rebounds and 3.9 assists, while shooting 45.4 percent from the field and 69.7 percent from the free throw line. The nine-time Conference USA Rookie of the Week is ranked among the league leaders in scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage, assists and steals.
He ranks first on the Memphis all-time freshmen steals list with 75 swipes. He is also second on the Tiger all-time freshman scoring chart with 599 points.
Memphis (33-3), ranked No. 3 in the Associated Press poll and No. 2 in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll, returns to action in the NCAA Tournament West Region semifinals (Sweet 16) on Thursday, Mar. 26. The No. 2 seed Tigers will meet No. 3 seed Missouri (30-6) at 8:37 pm (CT) at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.