Congrats to Cal forward Jaylen Brown on capturing the Pac-12 freshman of the year honors! Brown was named to the All Pac-12 first team earlier today, and now he received the highest honor as the conference's best first year player.
Brown is the Pac-12's leading freshman scorer. After struggling to shoot for much of non-conference play, Brown's game took off in conference play, scoring in double digits in all but two games, and scoring 15 or more points in all but three games. His 15.3 points per game is the third most from a freshman all-time.
Brown is the eighth Pac-12 freshman of the year from Cal, joining Dave Butler (1983), Leonard Taylor (1985), Jason Kidd (1993), Tremaine Fowlkes (1995), Shareef Abdur-Rahim (1996), Leon Powe (2004) and Allen Crabbe (2011).
Brown is also a finalist for the Wayman Tisdale National Freshman of the Year award, so he might be garnering national recognition soon enough!
Here is the release from Cal Athletics for Brown's announcement.
BERKELEY - Cal forward Jaylen Brown, who leads the Golden Bears in scoring with 15.3 ppg, has been named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year in a vote of the conference's coaches.
Brown, the only freshmen chosen to the All-Pac-12 first team announced earlier Monday, becomes the eighth Bear to be selected Freshman of the Year, joining Dave Butler (1983), Leonard Taylor (1985), Jason Kidd (1993), Tremaine Fowlkes (1995), Shareef Abdur-Rahim (1996), Leon Powe (2004) and Allen Crabbe (2011).
"I appreciate my teammates for allowing me to be in this position," Brown said. "It's a tremendous award, but it comes from team accolades. I just want to continue to win and strive for the best, and hopefully, that leads us to a good place."
A 6-7 forward from Atlanta, Georgia, Brown is contributing 5.6 rpg and nearly two assists per game in addition to his scoring. He has started every game this season, owns a high of 27 points vs. both Richmond and Utah, and has four double-doubles.
"This is a great honor and I'm really happy for Jaylen," head coach Cuonzo Martin said. "He's put in a lot of hard work from start to finish and has made tremendous strides during the year, especially the little things. He's become more efficient offensively, he's making good decisions with the ball, and he has really improved on defense. His growth as a basketball player has been fun to watch."
One of five finalists for the Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award, Brown's 15.3 ppg scoring average is third all-time among Cal freshmen behind only Abdur-Rahim (21.1 ppg in 1995-96) and Ryan Anderson (16.3 ppg in 2006-07). Brown has reached double figures in 26 of 31 games and has paced the Bears in scoring eight times, most recently in Cal's home finale against USC when he tallied 20 points. He is the first Cal freshman to be named first-team all-conference since Leon Powe in 2003-04.
Go Jaylen! Go Bears!