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Rutgers forward Ron Harper Jr. named to Julius Erving Award watch list

Junior forward Ron Harper Jr. is looking to establish himself as one of the top small forwards in the country. – Photo by The Daily Targum

Junior forward Ron Harper Jr. of the Rutgers men's basketball team was named to the preseason watch list for the 2021 Julius Erving Award, which honors the top small forward in the country.

Harper Jr. is entering his third season with the Scarlet Knights. He has started 49 games and averaged 10 points per game at Rutgers. Last season, Harper Jr. averaged 12.1 points per game, leading the Knights in scoring. He also averaged 5.8 rebounds per game.

Harper Jr. ranked in the top 25 in the Big Ten for effective field goal percentage, turnover rate, block percentage, three-point shooting percentage, free throw shooting, true shooting percentage and defensive rebound rate, according to On the Banks.

He earned Honorable Mention All-Big Ten and Second Team All-MET (Metropolitan Basketball Association) and was also named MET Player of the Week last season after Rutgers' win over Seton Hall. In the game, Harper Jr. scored 18 points and was named the Joe Calabrese Game MVP Honors.

He shot 16 for 28 from three-point range in his last seven games, according to NJ Advance Media.

“The first time I saw him play, I saw him do a little bit of everything,” said head men's basketball coach Steve Pikiell, according to NJ Advance Media. “It’s kind of funny, years later (at Rutgers), that’s exactly what he does — a little bit of everything.”

For updates on the Rutgers men's basketball team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

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