- Season to conclude with John R. Wooden Award winners, five Basketball Hall of Fame position award winners announced during new 90-minute format;
- New Fan Jam festival to take over L.A. LIVE plaza
The college basketball season officially ends Friday, April 7, when ESPN2 televises the College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s live at 8 p.m. ET from The Novo by Microsoft in downtown Los Angeles. Debuting a new, 90-minute format, the awards celebration will see winners named for: John R. Wooden Award presented by Wendy’s (Player of the Year – Men), John R. Wooden Award (Player of the Year – Women), John R. Wooden Award (Legends of Coaching), Bob Cousy Award presented by College of the Holy Cross (Point Guard of the Year), Jerry West Award (Shooting Guard of the Year), Julius Erving Award (Small Forward of the Year), Karl Malone Award (Power Forward of the Year) and the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award (Center of the Year).
Molly McGrath will join the ESPN College GameDay by State Farm team of Rece Davis, Jay Bilas, Seth Greenberg and Jay Williams as they interview winners, present awards and relive the season’s best moments. Features will include a stop at the General Hospital set for South Carolina’s A’ja Wilson and Villanova’s Josh Hart, and a mockumentary starring rapper/comedian Lil Dicky paying a visit to UCLA guard Lonzo Ball’s house. In addition, actors Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory) and Danny Pudi (Community), and former Wooden Award winners TJ Ford (2003) and Hall of Fame player Ralph Sampson (1982 & 1983), will appear during the telecast, while Hall of Fame players Julius Erving, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Jerry West, Ann Meyers Drysdale and former Notre Dame and WNBA standout Ruth Riley will be on hand to present the night’s awards.
Expected to attend are men’s players Ball (UCLA), Hart (Villanova), Przemek Karnowski (Gonzaga), Frank Mason (Kansas), Malik Monk (Kentucky) and Johnathan Motley (Baylor); women’s players Kelsey Mitchell (Ohio State), Kelsey Plum (Washington) and South Carolina’s Wilson; and coaches John Calipari (Kentucky), Scott Drew (Baylor), Mark Few (Gonzaga), Kevin McGruff (Ohio State), Mike Neighbors (Washington) and Jay Wright (Villanova).
Rounding out the event, recently announced Class of 2017 Hall of Fame member and Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw, will receive the 2017 Legends of Coaching Award™ in recognition of her more than three decades of contributions and leadership to college basketball, including 29 years at the helm for the Fighting Irish.
First Wendy’s Fan Jam festival
New this year on the day of show, the inaugural Wendy’s Fan Jam festival will take place at the L.A. LIVE plaza in downtown Los Angeles beginning at noon PT. The afternoon will be jam packed with entertainment and fan participation opportunities as well as the presentation of the high school Wooden Award to Southern California’s top eight high school boys and girls players. Local youth basketball teams will interact with Wooden Award finalists, Hall of Fame legends and top college players, as they compete in a shoot-out competition.
Slam dunk shows, drumline, college cheer and dance team performances, along with Shoot and Win Contests presented by Wendy’s will take place for spectators and fans. Participants will have the chance to win prizes, including tickets to the show.
A full list of the winners and accompanying images will be released immediately following the telecast and available at espnmediazone.com.
For Images from 2016