Former Simeon high school star, Derrick Rose, now a standout at the University of Memphis, has been named as one of the 24 finalists for the John R. Wooden Award, which goes annually to the top college basketball player in the country.

Rose, who led Simeon to two straight state titles, has been one of the nation’s top players all season with the Tigers. He is second on the team in scoring at 14.1 points a game and tops the squad in assists with 141. The 6-3 guard is ranked among the leaders in Conference USA in scoring, field goal percentage, assists and steals.

Last week, he was named the conference Freshman of the Year. Rose’s teammate Chris Douglas- Roberts is also a finalist for the Wooden Award. Other candidates for the award are Eric Gordon of Indiana; Brandon Rush of Kansas; O.J. Mayo of USC; Michael Beasley of Kansas State; and Tyler Hansbrough of North Carolina.

The Wooden Award winner will be announced on April 12 during a special ceremony at the Los Angeles Athletic Club. Named in honor of legendary UCLA head coach John Wooden, the Wooden award has had some impressive previous winners: Elton Brand of Duke; Tim Duncan of Wake Fores; Glen Robinson of Purdue; Michael Jordan of North Carolina; and Marques Johnson of UCLA.

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