In a season in which he has firmly established himself as UNC’s most consistent player, junior forward Armando Bacot has seen no shortage of accolades come his way. After being named ACC Player of the Week Monday for two career performances against Notre Dame and Virginia, Bacot earned a spot on the mid-season watch list for the Lute Olson Award Thursday.

Bacot is one of 30 names on the list. The Lute Olson Award, named for the former Hall of Fame head coach at Arizona, honors the National Player of the Year and was first awarded in 2010. Bacot would be the first Tar Heel ever to win the award.

This season, Bacot is averaging 16.6 points and 11.1 rebounds per game, both of which are career-highs and best on the team. His 11 double-doubles this season rank second in the country, and he currently leads the ACC with a 64.2 field goal percentage. Against Virginia on Saturday, Bacot set career-highs with 29 points and 22 rebounds, and became the first Tar Heel to record a 20-point, 20-rebound game since Brice Johnson, and the first to do so in the Smith Center since Sean May.

Bacot is one of five ACC players among the Olson Award Watch List. Wendell Moore and Paolo Banchero of Duke feature on the list, as well as Wake Forest’s Alondes Williams and Virginia Tech’s Keve Aluma. UNC will pay a visit to Williams and the Demon Deacons on Saturday, January 22, before Aluma and the Hokies visit Chapel Hill the following Monday. UNC will also visit Virginia Tech on Saturday, February 19. Carolina’s first game with Duke is scheduled for Saturday, February 5 in the Smith Center.

To view the full award watch list, click here.


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