Gafford up for top center award

Arkansas past Kent State

Arkansas Razorbacks sophomore center Daniel Gafford is among 10 candidates for the 2019 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Friday.

The former El Dorado Wildcat was also named to The Sporting News Midseason All-American team, a 15-player squad with Gafford and Tennessee’s Grant Williams being the only representatives from the SEC. Gafford ranks fifth in the NCAA field goal percentage (.667) and is the only player in the Southeastern Conference to rank among the top 10 in field goal percentage (1st; .667), scoring (5th, 16.9 avg.), rebounding (2nd; 8.9 avg.), blocked shots (6th, 2.0 avg.), offensive rebounds (5th; 2.8 avg.) and defensive rebounds (2nd; 6.14 avg.).

The award is named after the three-time NCAA Champion and 1995 member of the Hall of Fame and honors the nation’s top center in college basketball. A national committee of top college basketball personnel determines the list of 21 candidates announced in October. Here are the 10 candidates remaining:

Daniel Gafford                  Arkansas

Nick Perkins                       Buffalo

Nico Carvacho                   Colorado State

Jessie Govan                      Georgetown

Bruno Fernando               Maryland

Nick Ward                           Michigan State

Moses Brown                     UCLA

Charles Bassey                   Western Kentucky

Nathan Knight                   William & Mary

Ethan Happ                         Wisconsin