Washington Bullets assistant coach Wes Unseld, his former teammate Earl (The Pearl) Monroe and Indiana University Coach Bob Knight are among a group of nine nominees to the basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.

A veteran of 13 NBA seasons, all with the Bullets, Unseld averaged 10.8 points and 13.9 rebounds per game during his career. A five-time all-star, Unseld was named the NBA's rookie of the year and most valuable player in 1969 and MVP of the championship playoffs in the title year of 1978. Seventh on the all-time NBA rebounding list, he holds Bullets records for rebounds, games, minutes played and assists.

"I guess it would be an honor if I were elected. I guess we'll have to wait and see," Unseld said yesterday. "I really hadn't thought about this at all. I remember Mark {Pray, the Bullets' public relations director} coming to me asking for information, but I didn't think anything of it."

Monroe averaged 18.8 points per game in his 13-year career, four-plus seasons of which were spent with the Bullets, then based in Baltimore. He played in three all-star games while a member of the team. Knight has won three NCAA championships with the Hoosiers.

The other candidates via a nominating panel headed by Hall of Famer Bob Cousy are Clyde Lovellette, Jack Hartman, Ralph Miller, Will Robinson, the late John Moir and the late Phil Woolpert. The nominations will be submitted to a 24-member honors committee for review, with the results announced in February. A nominee needs 18 votes to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame.