Griffin is TSN's Player of the Year

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma

March 12, 2009

NORMAN, Okla. – For several weeks, Oklahoma sophomore Blake Griffin has been considered the frontrunner for men's basketball national player of the year honors.  Analysts' projections are starting to become reality.

The 6-10, 251-pound Griffin was named national player of the year Thursday by The Sporting News.  Earlier this week, Griffin captured the same acclaim from Athlon Sports and FoxSports.com.

Joining Griffin as first-team America selections by The Sporting News were Pittsburgh sophomore DeJuan Blair, Davidson junior Stephen Curry, North Carolina senior Tyler Hansbrough and Arizona State sophomore James Harden.

Griffin leads the Big 12 in scoring (22.1 ppg), rebounding (14.2 rpg to lead the country) and field goal percentage (.634) while ranking fourth in blocked shots (1.3 bpg).  He is also averaging 2.4 assists per contest, more than any other Big 12 player taller than 6-foot-5, and ranks second on the team with 1.2 steals per game.

Griffin has set a single-season OU record with his 25 double-doubles (tied for the national lead and three shy of the Big 12 record) and has already set a Big 12 single-season mark with his 425 rebounds.  The Oklahoma City native also has 13 games of at least 20 points and 15 rebounds this year, eclipsing the previous league record of seven. 

With the help of the only 40/20 game in Big 12 history (career highs of 40 points and 23 rebounds Feb. 14 against Texas Tech), Griffin is averaging 27.3 points and 19.0 rebounds over his last four full games.

The sixth-ranked Sooners, who are 27-4 overall, are the No. 2 seed in the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship and face No. 7 seed Oklahoma State tonight at 6 p.m. CDT.

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