BJ Boston selected to 2021 Julius Erving Award Preseason Watch List
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Freshman Brandon Boston Jr. was tabbed to the 2021 Julius Erving Award Preseason Watch list, presented annually by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame to the top small forward in the country.
Boston is one of 20 players being considered for the award and is the second different UK player to be named to a preseason watch list for a positional award in as many days. Freshman teammate Terrence Clarke made Tuesday’s Jerry West Award watch list.
Boston joins Florida’s Keyonte Johnson and Tennessee’s Yves Pones as the Southeastern Conference players to earn selection to the preseason list of nominees. He is one of three freshmen to earn a preseason nod. Also included in that list is his former high school teammate at Sierra Canyon in Stanford’s Ziaire Williams.
Named after Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Julius Erving, this year’s award will be presented at the ESPN College Basketball Awards Show in April. Boston is looking to become the Wildcats' first winner of the small forward positional award, which is in its seventh year of existence.
A consensus five-star prospect and Kentucky’s top-ranked player in the 2020 class, he averaged 19.7 points and 7.0 rebounds per game at Sierra Canyon his senior season. He helped lead the team to a 30-4 mark and a No. 2 national ranking. Boston was named the California Male Athlete of the Year and the California Basketball Player of the Year by USA Today. He was also tabbed a First Team Naismith All-American, Second Team Sports Illustrated All-American, SLAM Magazine All-American, California Mr. Basketball and the Gold Coast League MVP.
Boston was selected to the McDonald’s All American Game, the Allen Iverson Roundball Classic and the Jordan Brand Classic.
He averaged 22.8 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.9 steals per game in the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League circuit prior to his senior season. Boston earned 2018-19 MaxPreps Boys Basketball Junior All-American Team honorable mention distinction after averaging 18.4 points, 5.4 rebounds 1.9 steals while leading his previous high school in Norcross, Georgia to the state semifinals as a junior.
By mid-February, the watch list will be trimmed to 10 players. Five finalists will be revealed in late February with the winner being announced during the annual ESPN College Basketball Awards show on April 9. Fan voting will be a part of all three rounds of voting before a winner is announced.