BYU guard Jimmer Fredette captured the prestigious John R. Wooden national player of the year award Friday night in Los Angeles, and became the first consensus national player of the year in school history.
The Los Angeles Athletic Club bestowed the Wooden Award on Fredette, who is the first Cougar to earn that accolade since Danny Ainge in 1981.
"It's an unbelievable honor to be here," Fredette said after accepting the award. "It's one of the most prestigious awards in the country."
By landing this latest piece of hardware, Fredette swept all of the major national player of the year awards.
Prior to winning the Wooden Award, Fredette had already won the Naismith, Oscar Robertson, Adolph Rupp, National Association of Basketball Coaches and Associated Press national-player-of-the-year awards. Some college basketball observers consider the Wooden Award the biggest of them all.
Voters of the Wooden Award had until the weekend before the Final Four to cast their ballots. Fredette, who received 3,761 votes, topped the other four finalists - Connecticut's Kemba Walker (3,356), who led the Huskies to the national championship on Monday, Ohio State's Jared Sullinger (2,637), Duke's Nolan Smith (2,371), and Arizona's Derrick Williams (1,913).
The John R. Wooden Award, which has been given annually since 1977, is named after legendary UCLA coach John Wooden. Friday's award ceremony was the first since Wooden died on June 4, 2010.
Other past winners of the Wooden Award include Indiana State's Larry Bird (1979), North Carolina's Michael Jordan (1984), Wake Forest's Tim Duncan (1997), Utah's Andrew Bogut (2005), Texas' Kevin Durant (2007), and Oklahoma's Blake Griffin (2009).
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