Varnado named a Naismith finalist

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State All-SEC senior forward Jarvis Varnado has been named one of 30 finalists for the Naismith Trophy presented by AT&T, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced on Wednesday.
The finalists were chosen by the Atlanta Tipoff Club's board of selectors, which is comprised of basketball journalists from around the country. The award is given annually to the top men's college basketball player and will be presented at the Final Four in Indianapolis.
"It's a great honor," Varnado said. "I'm very humbled to be mentioned with all these great players. I'm blessed. My teammates and coaches have put me into this position of being recognized. You can't be mentioned with this type of award without great teammates."
The 6-foot-9 Brownsville, Tenn., native leads the SEC in rebounding (10.9) and is second nationally with 134 blocked shots, while his 13.2 points is second on the team.
He's also just eight blocks away from the NCAA career record, which currently stands at 535.
"When you consider Jarvis was a kid coming out of high school that wasn't heavily recruited, what he's been able to achieve is even more impressive," 12th-year MSU coach Rick Stansbury said. "He's a great a kid that comes from a great family, and he's deserving of everything he's achieved."