For the second time in the 2019-20 season, there are two Maryland Terrapins on the John Wooden Award watch list, which is given to the top college basketball player of the season.
Once again, it was point guard Anthony Cowan Jr. and forward Jalen Smith that made the 20-person shortlist. They are one of three teams, joining the Kansas Jayhawks and Duke Blue Devils with two candidates. Cowan and Smith have led the Terrapins all year as the two top scorers and playmakers.
Cowan is having a phenomenal senior season for Maryland. He has a career-high average in points (16.2) as the Terps' primary source of offense. Most recently, Cowan's 31 points against Iowa gave him a new career-high for a single game. The last several games have seen Cowan rise up a level and he credits that to the game slowing down for him.
Cowan has been on the Wooden list throughout the season. This is the third update of the year and the shortest watch list of the season.
Smith returns to the list after missing the 25-person Midseason Watch List. That is likely due to the tear that the 6-10 forward has been on in Big Ten play. Smith has recorded a double-double in four straight contests, resulting in a four-game winning streak for Maryland.
A big jump for the sophomore against top-tier competition.
Being named to the John Wooden Late Season Watch List does not guarantee any player to be named one of the 15 finalists in March. However, with two in the top 20, there is a greater likelihood that at least one Terrapin in consideration for being named the best player in college basketball.
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