Four finalists named for college basketball’s most outstanding player

Villanova's Josh Hart, Kansas' Frank Mason III, Purdue's Caleb Swanigan and UCLA's Lonzo Ball are finalists for the 2017 Naismith Trophy.

Villanova senior Josh Hart, Kansas senior Frank Mason III, Purdue sophomore Caleb Swanigan and UCLA freshman Lonzo Ball are the four finalists for the James A. Naismith Trophy, which honors the most outstanding player in college basketball, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Sunday.

Hart (Big East), Mason (Big 12) and Swanigan (Big Ten) earned player of the year awards in their respective conferences. Ball was freshman of the year in the Pac-12.

The four finalists were chosen by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s national voting academy, composed of journalists, current and former head coaches, former award winners and conference commissioners.

This year, fan votes count for five percent of the final voting that determines the Naismith Trophy winner.

Votes can be cast at between March 20-31.

The 2017 Naismith Trophy winner will be announced April 2, the day between the NCAA Tournament semifinals and final, at an event in Scottsdale, Ariz., near Phoenix, site of this year’s Final Four.

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