On Monday, Nebraska guard James Palmer Jr. was named to the preseason watch list for the 2019 Citizen Naismith Trophy Men’s Player of the Year.
One of 50 on the list and eight from the Big Ten, Palmer continues to see love from outside Lincoln in the run-up to the 2018-19 campaign. He has also been named to the Jerry West Award watch list, given to the nation's top two-guard. He's the first Nebraska player to be named to the Naismith watch list since Terran Petteway in 2014-15.
A returning first-team All-Big Ten selection, Palmer comes off a junior season where he averaged 17.2 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists a game while leading the Huskers to a 22-11 record and a four-seed in the Big Ten. Palmer reached double figures in 31 of 33 games in his first season at Nebraska, including eight 20-point outings and a career-high 34-point game at Ohio State. Palmer is one of only five returning power conference players who averaged 17 points, four rebounds and three assists last season.
In Big Ten play, Palmer finished third in the conference at 18.8 points per game, reaching double figures in 17 of 18 conference tilts. He also finished 11th in assists (3.4 a game) in Big Ten action. He is the highest-returning scorer in Big Ten play in six seasons.
A list of 10 national semifinalists for the award will be announced on March 4, 2019, while the four finalists will be named on March 19. The winner will be presented with the award at the Naismith Awards Brunch on April 7, 2019, during the Final Four in Minneapolis.