University of Louisville's Russ Smith and Montrezl Harrell are listed on the John R. Wooden Award Preseason Top 50, the Los Angeles Athletic Club announced Tuesday afternoon from Los Angeles. Louisville is one of 10 schools with at least two candidates for the sport's prestigious honor.
It marks the second-consecutive year the Cardinals have placed at least two student-athletes on the list after populating last year's preseason top 50 with three.
Smith, a preseason Associated Press All-American, has received All-America accolades from Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook and CBSSports.com. The senior also was tabbed as the American Athletic Conference Preseason Player of the Year.
The Brooklyn, N.Y., native scored a game-high 21 in Louisville's season-opening victory against College of Charleston, going 7 of 17 from the field while also tallying five assists. His one steal put him in sole possession of 10th on the school's career steals chart at 184.
Last season, Smith averaged 18.7 points and 2.1 steals per game en route to being named the 2013 Ken Pomeroy National Player of the Year.
A sophomore, Harrell was recognized during the preseason after playing a pivotal role last year in the Cardinals' run to their third NCAA title in school history. A third-team preseason All-America selection by The Sporting News and a second-team choice by USA Today, Harrell was listed third in CBSSports.com's Top 30 Breakout Players. He was a second-team all-American Athletic Conference selection by the league coaches.
Harrell had a productive season opener as well, nearly tallying a double-double with 10 points and eight rebounds. He also recorded four steals.
The Tarboro, N.C., native played in all 40 games last year, averaging 6.4 points and 3.2 rebounds in 14.8 minutes per game. He shot a solid 61.5 percent from the field and totaled a career-best 20 points to lead Louisville to a comeback victory over Syracuse for the BIG EAST Tournament title.
|2013-14 John R. Wooden Award® Presented by Wendy's Preseason Top 50|
|Keith Appling||Michigan State||Big Ten||Sr.|
|Isaiah Austin||Baylor||Big 12||So.|
|Jahii Carson||Arizona State||Pac-12||So.|
|Semaj Christon||Xavier||Big East||So.|
|Aaron Craft||Ohio State||Big Ten||Sr.|
|Sam Dekker||Wisconsin||Big Ten||So.|
|Cleanthony Early||Wichita State||Missouri Valley||Sr.|
|Joel Embiid||Kansas||Big 12||Fr.|
|Jerian Grant||Notre Dame||ACC||Sr.|
|Montrezl Harrell||Louisville||The American||So.|
|Gary Harris||Michigan State||Big Ten||So.|
|Andre Hollins||Minnesota||Big Ten||Jr.|
|Joe Jackson||Memphis||The American||Sr.|
|Cory Jefferson||Baylor||Big 12||Sr.|
|Sean Kilpatrick||Cincinnati||The American||Sr.|
|Alex Kirk||New Mexico||Mountain West||Jr.|
|James Michael McAdoo||North Carolina||ACC||Jr.|
|Doug McDermott||Creighton||Big East||Sr.|
|Mitch McGary||Michigan||Big Ten||So.|
|Shabazz Napier||Connecticut||The American||Sr.|
|Adreian Payne||Michigan State||Big Ten||Sr.|
|Elfrid Payton||Louisiana||Sun Belt||Jr.|
|Juvonte Reddic||VCU||Atlantic 10||Sr.|
|Glenn Robinson III||Michigan||Big Ten||So.|
|LaQuinton Ross||Ohio State||Big Ten||Jr.|
|Wayne Selden, Jr.||Kansas||Big 12||Fr.|
|Marcus Smart||Oklahoma State||Big 12||So.|
|Russ Smith||Louisville||The American||Sr.|
|Noah Vonleh||Indiana||Big Ten||Fr.|
|Andrew Wiggins||Kansas||Big 12||Fr.|
|Kendall Williams||New Mexico||Mountain West||Sr.|