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Red Storm’s Hatten named to Wooden Award list

St. John’s University announced this week that men’s basketball star Marcus Hatten has been named as a Top 50 finalist for the John R. Wooden Award as voted by the Los Angeles Athletic Club.

The Wooden Award, named after the great UCLAcoach, is the most prestigious honor in college basketball and is bestowed upon the nation’s best player, who in addition to his athletic prowess also is in good standing academically and is making progress toward graduation. Former St. John’s stars Chris Mullin and Walter Berry won the Wooden Award in back-to-back years from 1985 to 1986.

“The Wooden Award is one of the premier awards in college basketball and just to be nominated is an honor in itself,” head coach Mike Jarvis said. “That honor speaks volumes about Marcus Hatten the individual and we’re so excited for him to get the recognition he deserves.”

Hatten, a 6-foot-1 guard from Baltimore, Md., led the Big East Conference in scoring in his first year at St. John’s last season with a 22.3 point per game average in league play. In 32 games last year Hatten led the team in scoring average (20.1), assists (4.6) and steals (3.3) while finishing second in rebounding (5.3).

A former Junior College Player of the Year in 2000 at Tallahassee (Fla.) Community College, Hatten received several accolades in his first season leading the Red Storm to a 20-12 record and a berth in the NCAA East Regional in Washington, D.C. He was an All-Big East first team selection last year, won the coveted Lt. Frank Haggerty Award as the Metropolitan Area Player of the Year as voted by the Metropolitan Basketball Writers Association of America and was a first team District II selection as voted by the United States Basketball Writers.

The Big East Conference is well represented on the Wooden Award list as six other players grace the Top 50 including Troy Bell (Boston College), Brandin Knight (Pittsburgh), Emeka Okafor (Connecticut), Darius Rice (Miami), Michael Sweetney (Georgetown) and Chris Thomas (Notre Dame).

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