Redick Named ACC Player Of The Year
March 16, 2005
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) - J.J. Redick helped Duke overcome injuries and a depleted roster to remain at the top of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
And for that he was rewarded Wednesday with The Associated Press ACC player of the year award.
The junior shooting guard easily beat North Carolina's Sean May and Wake Forest's Chris Paul in voting by members of the media. Of the 121 ballots cast, Redick got 68, followed by May (34) and Paul (11).
"I was a little surprised that I got it," Redick said. "It's just a huge honor, considering the number of great players in this league who all had great seasons. I think you could take a handful of guys and choose any one of them."
He led the ACC in scoring, free throw percentage and minutes played while the Blue Devils (25-5) finished third in the final AP poll. He also was named MVP of the ACC tournament after scoring 76 points in three games. His 35 points against North Carolina State in the tournament semifinals matched a school single-game scoring record for the tournament.
Duke begins play in the NCAA tournament in Charlotte on Friday as the top seed in the Austin Regional. The Blue Devils open against Delaware State.
"I think so far, I've done a good job of leading this team, and I'm excited about this tournament," Redick said. "For us to be a No. 1 seed and 25-5 going into the tournament, that's really special."
Redick averaged 22.8 points and 37.1 minutes for the Blue Devils, and he shot 94 percent from the free throw line. But his shooting from beyond the 3-point line is what sets him apart from most players.
Redick made 115 of 276 shots from long range, and his 42 percent shooting was good for fifth in the ACC.
"If he gets a little bit of breathing room, it's going up," teammate Shelden Williams said. "That's one of the things he can do."
Other Duke players marvel at his ability to make shots from long distances. In practice, when the team holds shooting contests from halfcourt, everyone essentially throws the ball at the goal.
Not Redick. Most of the time, he sticks with his regular form.
"J.J. has become a complete player," Krzyzewski said. "Everyone watches his shooting ability. He's found different ways to score; he's become our best off-the-ball perimeter defender; he's handled the ball; he's become a leader for us."
If Redick stays for his senior season, he has an outside chance to surpass former Wake Forest star Dickie Hemric as the leading scorer in ACC history. Redick had 685 points this season to give him 1,769 for his career - 818 short of Hemric's mark.
Along the way, Redick could also pass Duke associate head coach Johnny Dawkins at the top of school's career list. Dawkins had 2,556.
"I don't think there's really any comparison," Redick said. "Coach Dawkins is probably the best player that's ever played here, and I'm certainly not that. Just to work with him every day and to play for him, it's a great honor."