March 21, 2014
STORRS, Conn. – Sophomore forward Breanna Stewart has been selected as one of four finalists for the 2014 Naismith Trophy, which is awarded annually to the nation’s top collegiate basketball player, as announced by the Atlanta Tipoff Club on Friday. The fan voting component of the award’s selection process will begin next week.
Stewart is joined by Notre Dame’s Kayla McBride, Stanford’s Chiney Ogwumike and Baylor’s Odyssey Sims.
The finalists were chosen by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s National Voting Academy, which determined that the player performances throughout the 2013-14 regular season stood out among a host of great women’s basketball players. The 2014 Naismith Women’s College Player of the Year presented by AT&T will be awarded to one of these four finalists on April 7, 2014, in Nashville, Tenn.
For the 10th consecutive year, fans will have the opportunity to vote for the player of their choice and help determine the 2014 Naismith Trophy winner. Beginning March 24 and running through April 5 fans can cast their vote through the online and mobile optimized site www.NaismithVote.com. The fan vote represents 25 percent of the selection process – the largest fan impact of any collegiate basketball award.
Stewart, who was recently selected as the 2013-14 American Athletic Conference Player of the Year and the espnW National Player of the Year, is leading the top-ranked Huskies at 19.7 points per game and is second on the squad at 8.1 rebounds per contest. She ranks in the league’s top-10 in scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage, three-point field goal percentage, blocks and free throw percentage.
The North Syracuse, N.Y. native was honored as the 2014 American Conference Tournament Most Outstanding Player after averaging 21.7 points per game en route to leading UConn to the inaugural title. The 2013-14 American Conference Preseason Player of the Year has been selected as the USBWA National Player of the Week and is also a finalist for the John R. Wooden Award.
Five Huskies have won the Naismith Trophy, including Rebecca Lobo (1995), Sue Bird (2002), Diana Taurasi (2003), Maya Moore (2009 and 2011) and Tina Charles (2010).
ABOUT THE ATLANTA TIPOFF CLUB
Founded during the 1956-57 season, the Atlanta Tipoff Club, an Atlanta Sports Council property, is committed to promoting the game of basketball and recognizing the outstanding accomplishments of those who make the game so exciting. The Atlanta Tipoff Club administers the Naismith Awards, which have become the most prestigious national honors in all of college basketball. Named in honor of Dr. James Naismith, inventor of the game of basketball, the Naismith Trophy presented by AT&T recognizes the top Men’s and Women’s College Basketball Players of the Year. Other Naismith Awards are presented to the Men’s and Women’s College Basketball Coaches of the Year, Boy’s and Girl’s high school basketball players and coaches of the year, high school scholar-athletes, basketball officials, student sections and overall contributors to the game. The Naismith Trophy was first presented to UCLA’s Lew Alcindor (later known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) in 1969. Old Dominion’s Anne Donovan won the inaugural Women’s Naismith Trophy in 1983. For more information, visit http://www.naismithawards.com.