Zeke Nnaji named Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, 1st Team member
Arizona Wildcats power forward Zeke Nnaji may not have entered college with the national acclaim of some of his teammates coming out of high school, but he showed he was the best freshman in the conference.
Nnaji was named the 2019-20 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and a member of the conference First Team, the conference announced Monday.
Entering Arizona as a four-star player, Nnaji averaged 16.3 points per game, the eighth-most in the Pac-12, and posted 8.6 rebounds per game, which was tied for fourth-most.
His 3.1 offensive boards was the second-best behind USC’s Onyeka Okongwu.
Nnaji shot 57.3% from the field, the fourth-best among qualified players and made a respectable 75.8% of his free throws.
In addition to being named Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, he was named to the All-Pac-12 First Team.
Arizona point guard Nico Mannion also received Pac-12 honors.
Mannion was named to the All-Pac-12 Second Team.
A five-star recruit, Mannion averaged 14 points, 5.4 assists and 2.5 rebounds per game as a freshman.
His assist tally was the second-most assists per game in the conference behind Payton Pritchard, the Oregon guard named Pac-12 Player of the Year.
Mannion’s 2.06 assist-to-turnover ratio is also among the best in the conference.
Mannion and Nnaji helped helped lead the Wildcats to a 20-11 record and a likely return in the NCAA Tournament. Arizona missed out on March Madness last season for the first time since 2012.
All-Pac-12 First Team
|Oscar da Silva||Stanford||F||Jr.||Munich, Germany|
|CJ Elleby||Washington State||F||So.||Seattle, Wash.|
|Remy Martin||Arizona State||G||Jr.||Chatsworth, Calif.|
|Zeke Nnaji||Arizona||F||Fr.||Hopkins, Minn.|
|Onyeka Okongwu||USC||F||Fr.||Chino, Calif.|
|Payton Pritchard||Oregon||G||Sr.||West Linn, Ore.|
|Chris Smith||UCLA||G||Jr.||Chicago, Ill.|
|Isaiah Stewart||Washington||F||Fr.||Rochester, N.Y.|
|Tres Tinkle***||Oregon State||F||Sr.||Missoula, Mont.|
|McKinley Wright IV**||Colorado||G||Jr.||North Robbinsdale, Minn.|
All-Pac-12 Second Team
|Timmy Allen||Utah||F||So.||Mesa, Ariz.|
|Tyler Bey||Colorado||G/F||Jr.||Las Vegas, Nev.|
|Matt Bradley||California||G||So.||San Bernardino, Calif.|
|Nico Mannion||Arizona||G||Fr.||Siena, Italy|
|Jonah Mathews||USC||G||Sr.||Santa Monica, Calif.|