Duke basketball: Vernon Carey Jr. named National Freshman of Year

Duke basketball freshman Vernon Carey Jr. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Duke basketball freshman Vernon Carey Jr. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

Vernon Carey Jr. was the latest winner of the National Freshman of the Year Award as the Duke basketball program continues to pump out the top young players each season.

The Duke basketball program has another National Freshman of the Year and it’s Vernon Carey Jr.

The United States Basketball Writers Association named the Southwest Ranches, Florida native as the winner of the Wayman Tisdale Award, which is awarded to the top freshman in the nation.

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Carey Jr. joins Zion Williamson, Jahlil Okafor, and Jabari Parker as the winners of the award who played for Duke since 2014.

The 6-foot-10 forward averaged 17.8 points, 8.8 rebounds, 1.0 assists, and 1.6 blocks per game with 57.7 percent shooting from the floor.

Carey Jr. was also named as the ACC Rookie of the Year in addition to being tabbed a Second Team All-American by the Associated Press and the USBWA and was the only freshman named to any of the All-American teams by either outlet.

Duke’s leading scorer entered Durham from University School (FL) and was the No. 6 ranked player in the 247Sports Composite Rankings and was lined up to be the only freshman in the top six of those rankings to reach the NCAA Tournament, had it not been canceled.

ALSO READ: Tre Jones, Vernon Carey Jr. named as All-Americans

While no official announcement has been made, the expectation is that Vernon Carey Jr. will leave Duke after just one season and enter the 2020 NBA Draft.

Many mock drafts have the Blue Devil freshman being selected at the end of the first round, which seems extremely low, but with the new ‘small-ball’ style of the NBA, some don’t think Carey Jr.’s game will directly translate to the professional rankings, despite his 38.1 percent shooting from 3-point range at Duke.

ALSO READ: Trio of Blue Devils earn USBWA All-American honors

Dayton’s Obi Toppin was named as the USBWA National Player of the Year while his coach, Anthony Grant, was named as the Coach of the Year.