UCLA guard Bryce Alford named Pac-12 Basketball Player of the Week

January 11, 2016

UCLA junior guard Bryce Alford earned his first-ever Pac-12 Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week award after averaging 21.5 points and shooting 50 percent from behind the arc, including key late treys in each of the Bruins’ two home victories.  The honor was the first of Alford's collegiate career.

Alford shot 55 percent overall from the field (16-29), including 8-of-16 behind the arc, and added 5 assists, 3 rebounds and 1.5 steals to guide UCLA (11-6, 2-2) to home wins over No. 7 Arizona and Arizona State.

The 6-3 guard from Albuquerque opened the week with a game-winning three-pointer with 1.8 seconds left to lift UCLA to an 87-84 upset of No. 7 Arizona and earn ESPN SportsCenter’s No. 1 play for Thursday.  The bucket delighted NBA star and Bruin alum Russell Westbrook, who was honored at the game and seated courtside.

Alford finished with a team-high 25 points (9-18 FG, 5-11 3FG), six assists, and four rebounds in the win over the Wildcats, which gave the Bruins their third Top 25 triumph this season.

In Saturday’s 81-74 victory against Arizona State, Alford totaled 18 points (7-11 FG, 3-5 3FG), four assists, and two steals, and connected on a game-clinching corner three to push UCLA’s lead to six with 24 seconds left.

Alford leads the Pac-12 in free throw percentage (87.5%) and minutes played (37.1 mpg), and ranks third in the league in scoring (17.4 ppg), fourth in assists (5.1 apg), and fifth in made three-pointers (2.2 3FGM).

The competitive nature of the games reflects the quality of the Conference this season. After having an NCAA-best nine teams in last week’s CBSSports.com Bracketology projection from Jerry Palm, the Pac-12 has a nation-leading eight teams in ESPN.com’s latest Bracketology via Joe Lunardi.

Other nominees were Kaleb Tarczewski, Arizona; George King, Colorado; Dillon Brooks, Oregon; Gary Payton II, Oregon State; Rosco Allen, Stanford; Julian Jacobs, USC; Lorenzo Bonam, Utah; Andrew Andrews, Washington; and Josh Hawkinson, Washington State.

This week UCLA hosts USC on Wednesday, Jan. 13 at 8 p.m. PT on ESPN2.

By Staff of TheDailySportsHerald.com and news services

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