Taurasi Selected as one of 20 Finalists For Naismith National Player of the Year


STORRS, Conn. (February 18) – UConn senior standout Diana Taurasi has been named as one of 20 finalists for the Naismith College Basketball Player of the Year Award, which were announced today by the Atlanta Tipoff Club.

Taurasi, who was honored as the Naismith winner last season, will be looking to become the fifth player to win the award more than once, joining former multiple winners Cheryl Miller (1984, 85, 86), Clarrisa Davis (1987, 89), Dawn Staley (1991, 92), Chamique Holdsclaw (1998, 99).

The Naismith Board of Selectors, which includes some of the country’s leading basketball coaches, journalists and administrators, began the selection process earlier this year. They have reduced the number of finalists by balloting to the twenty top female players they feel most deserving of the award.

The winners of the Naismith Awards, the most prestigious individual honor in college basketball, will be honored in Atlanta on Friday, April 9, 2004.

The finalists for the Naismith College Player of the Year Award (listed alphabetically) are as follows:
Seimone Augustus, Louisiana State
Jacqueline Batteast, Notre Dame
Alana Beard, Duke
Tera Bjorklund, Colorado
Jamie Carey, Texas
Shameka Christon, Arkansas
Shyra Ely, Tennessee
Trina Frierson, LA Tech
Chandi Jones, Houston
Kelly Mazzante, Penn State
Nicole Ohlde, Kansas State
Cappie Pondexter, Rutgers
Nicole Powell, Stanford
Stacy Stephens, Texas
Diana Taurasi, Connecticut
Christi Thomas, Georgia
 Iciss Tillis, Duke
Kendra Wecker, Kansas State
Lindsay Whalen, Minnesota
Shereka Wright, Purdue