Who else is better qualified to hand out some college basketball hardware than the fans who watch the games on a regular basis?
The 2nd Annual CCR Mid-Major Freshman of the Year Fan Vote got under way on February 29th, and the votes started to roll in right from the outset. Schools got behind their talented freshmen, trying to propel their players to the top of the contest.
More and more schools have joined the campaign trails as the contest has picked up steam. In total, a combined 72,074 votes were cast in the Elite 8 through the online polls and Twitter.
Below, you can see who moved on, and the percentage of votes they received in each of their respective match-ups.
You can vote for the Final Four here!
Fletcher Magee – Wofford (54.53%) def. Nico Clareth – Siena (45.47%)
The reigning Southern Conference Freshman of the Year has been on a tear as of late in the CCR Mid-Major Freshman of the Year Fan Vote. After cruising into the Elite 8, Wofford’s Fletcher Magee was in tough against Siena’ Nico Clareth.
In the online polls, the players went back and forth, and were neck-and-neck down to the wire. In the end, Magee used a hefty dose of support on Twitter to guide him to the victory and push him to the Final Four.
Jaylen Franklin – Abilene Christian (55.0%) def. Joe Rosga – Denver (45.0%)
Two of the contest’s biggest supporters went head-to-head in the Elite Eight, as Jaylen Franklin and the Abilene Christian Wildcats squared off against Joe Rosga and the Denver Pioneers. Both athletic programs pushed their respective players to relatively easy victories in the opening rounds, but would need to step up their game with a spot in the Final Four on the line.
Franklin, the 2015-16 Southland Conference Freshman of the Year, has looked like an unstoppable force throughout the competition. Time and time again, he has been the top vote-getter amongst the freshmen, and his successful run wouldn’t end without a shot at the championship. It was closer than previous pairings, but Franklin took down Rosga after a big final day push.
Matt Morgan – Cornell (52.48%) def. Joe Cremo – Albany (47.52%)
As the contest has moved along, Joe Cremo and Matt Morgan have each seen their support levels steadily increase. In the Elite Eight, their were paired off against one another, and it would come down to which support crew would make the final push.
The lead was exchanged several times throughout the week. Heading into the weekend, Albany’s Cremo held what looked to be a commanding lead. However, the Big Red fans and athletics department got behind Morgan, and pushed him ahead of his opponent for good on Saturday. With that, Morgan is off to the Final Four, repping the Ivy League each step of the way.
Devin Morgan – Delaware State (57.12%) def. Jon Davis – Charlotte (42.88%)
Arguably the player who has gained the most support as the challenge has gone on plays for the team with the worst win-loss record out of the remaining teams. The Delaware State faithful have backed Devin Morgan as the contest has moved along, making him one of the top contenders to win it all.
In order to do that, he had to knock off another top contender, in Charlotte’ Jon Davis. Like the other match-ups, both players went back and forth to open the round. Davis took an early lead, but Morgan gained ground as the week progressed. Come Friday, Morgan was comfortably in front, and Davis never threatened again. The pride of the Hornets is off to the Final Four.