Sharp named to Naismith Men’s Defensive of Player of the Year Watch List


Alexandra Hendricks

WKU center Jamarion Sharp (33) dunks to give WKU a point during the WKU v University of Louisville basketball game at Diddle Arena on Dec. 18, 2021.

Kaden Gaylord-Day, Men's Basketball Reporter

The Atlanta Tipoff Club announced that WKU Men’s Basketball center Jamarion Sharp was named to the 2022 Naismith Men’s Defensive Player of the Year Watch List on Thursday afternoon.

Sharp is one of just five players from outside the Power Five on the watch list for the award, given annually to the nation’s top defensive men’s player. The big man leads the nation in blocked shots per game and total blocks.

Being the tallest player in the country has its perks, as he’s averaging 9.5 points, 7.7 rebounds and 4.9 blocks per game while shooting 76.8% from the field since entering the starting lineup against Alabama A&M. He has more solo blocks this season than 292 Division I programs have as a team. 

The junior is one of only 13 players in Division I basketball to post a triple-double this season. He did it in his first start, which was only the third in program history and the first with points, rebounds and blocks. 

Sharp joins former Hilltopper and current Philadelphia 76er Charles Bassey as the only WKU players to ever be named to the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Watch List. 

Men’s Basketball Reporter Kaden Gaylord-Day can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @_KLG3.