It was announced yesterday that University of Kentucky freshman forward Anthony Davis has won the Adolph Rupp National Player of the Year Award. The award recipient is chosen by journalists coaches and administrators under the Commonwealth Athletic Club of Kentucky. The award's namesake, Adolph Rupp, was the coach of Kentucky from 1930 to 1972.
Although the award-granting athletic club is located in Kentucky and named after a Kentucky Wildcats coach, the award is not exclusively for Wildcats players. In fact, Anthony Davis is only the second player from Kentucky to win the Rupp award. The first was John Wall, who won the award in 2010.
Gerry Calvert, spokesman for the Commonwealth Athletic Club, told WLEX-TV, "It has been an absolute joy watching Anthony play this year. Especially considering that he's just a freshman."
Davis played an average of 36 minutes a game, and he used his time wisely. The young forward, who stands at a towering 6'10" tall and has a wingspan to match, averages 14.3 points per game. On top of that, he pulls down 10.1 rebounds per game, and earns 4.6 blocks per game.
"Regardless of records and individual achievement, the one thing Coach Rupp wanted out of a player was for him to make a difference in the game so that the team could win. That's exactly what Anthony has done this year for UK," Calvert said.
While the award is a high honor, now is not the time for Davis to rest on his laurels. Tomorrow night, the Wildcats face the Indiana Hooisers for a chance to make it to the Elite Eight. It is just one of many tests Davis and Kentucky have to face on their road to a NCAA championship. Although Kentucky holds the number one seed, they have to expect the Hoosiers to put up a fight.