Northwest Missouri State junior guard Justin Pitts has been named to the Top 50 watch list for the Bevo Francis Award.
The Blue Springs South High School graduate was one of 100 players named to the list from the Small College Basketball organization that will honor the top player among small colleges in NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, NAIA Division I, NAIA Division II, USCAA and NCCAA. The list was narrowed to 50 names on Wednesday.
Pitts, a 5-foot-9 junior, is averaging 19.7 points, 5.4 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game while leading the Bearcats to a 23-0 record and the No. 1-ranking in NCAA Division II. He is shooting 53 percent from the field, including 42 percent from 3-point range, and 88 percent from the free throw line.
Criteria for the award includes individual achievements, statistics, awards, milestones and team success.
The list will be narrowed down to 25 players in a Watch List on March 15. The finalists will be announced in a highlight video that will be released on April 1, while the 2017 Bevo Francis Award winner will be announced on April 3.