The University of Virginia may be allowing only 49.7 points per game to opponents, but even they wouldn’t hold a candle to the list of talented players below who were selected to the 2020 Midseason Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Award Team. Among the names is one notable selection near and dear to Beaver Nation, as senior center Kylor Kelley made the cut.
Kelley’s inclusion should come as a surprise to nobody at all, as the seven-footer currently ranks just a slight margin behind Florida International’s Osasumwen Osaghae, for the title of the country’s top shot-blocker. Kelley averages 3.94 blocks per game, while Osaghae swats away 4.11 shots per contest. The pride of Gervais, Oregon also averages an extremely low 1.9 personal fouls per game, demonstrating his ability to use smart positioning and movement to help stay on the court for his team.
After continuing to improve during his junior campaign, Kelley has really hit the ground running in his senior season, as he also averages 11.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and shoots 58.6% from the field. Kelley is one of just two Pac-12 players selected to the group, alongside Colorado’s Tyler Bey.
The full list is included below.
The Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Award has been in existence since 2018 and is announced during the Final Four. Kelley will be hoping to keep the coveted award in the Conference of Champions, as Washington’s Matisse Thybulle scooped up the accolade last year.