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    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Men’s Basketball Facebook Page
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    Montrezl Harrell delivered time-and-time again - and most of the time with authority - in his three-year career with the University of Louisville men’s basketball team.

    So, it’s only fitting that he is the inaugural recipient of the Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award presented by cConnect by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Malone, who was nicknamed “The Mailman,” was a two-time NBA Most Valuable Player and 14-time All-Star who is the league’s second all-time leading scorer and is regarded by many as the best power forward to play the game.

    Harrell, a 6-foot-8, 240-pound junior power forward, averaged 15.7 points and 9.2 rebounds per game while shooting 56.6 percent from the field in earning second team All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors for the Cardinals, who went 27-9 this season and lost to Michigan State 76-70 in overtime in the NCAA Tournament’s East Region final.

    Harrell, who will forego his senior season and enter the NBA Draft, is UofL’s career leader (221) in dunks (most of which put the "power" in power forward) and also is fourth in career field-goal percentage (58.6) while tying for 31st in scoring (1,294 points/11.6 ppg). As a freshman he was a high-energy player off the bench, averaging 5.7 points and 3.6 rebounds per game for the national championship team. Harrell tallied two points - on a thunderous dunk that still is probably the most memorable moment of his career - in the Cards’ 82-76 victory over Michigan in the title game in Atlanta.

    He became a starter as a sophomore and flourished, averaging 14.4 points and 8.4 rebounds per game while shooting 60.9 percent from the field. The Cards won 82.3 percent of their games (93-20) during Harrell’s career.

    Malone presented the award to Harrell on Friday night at the ESPN College Basketball Awards presented by Wendy’s, which were broadcast live on ESPN2, from Club Nokia in Los Angeles.

    The four other finalists for the Malone Award were Gonzaga’s Kyle Wiltjer, Iona’s David Laury, Iowa State’s Georges Niang and Kansas’ Perry Ellis. The winner was determined by a combination of fan votes and input from the Basketball Hall of Fame’s selection committee.

    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Men’s Basketball Facebook Page

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