Dec. 29, 2008
California Golden Bear senior forward Ashley Walker has been named to the Naismith Trophy Early Season Watch List as a player to contend for this national player of the year honor. Walker is also on the watch lists for the Wooden Award and the State Farm WBCA Wade Trophy, two more player of the year honors.
For the sixth consecutive season, presenting sponsor AT&T will once again set the standard in allowing fans to participate in determining this year's winner. Through the power and ease of text messaging, fan voting will account for an unprecedented 25% of the final results - more than any other national college basketball award.
In February, the Naismith Trophy voting academy, comprised of leading basketball journalists, coaches and administrators from around the country, will narrow its preseason list to the Top 30 players in the nation. Those players, and others who distinguish themselves throughout the season, will be eligible for the final ballot in March.
Named in honor of Dr. James Naismith, founder of the game of basketball, the Naismith Trophy presented by AT&T is awarded annually to the male and female college basketball players of the year. First awarded in 1969 to UCLA's Lew Alcindor, later known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the Naismith Trophy was sculpted by Marty C. Dawe of Atlanta and has become the most prestigious national honors awarded each year to the top men's and women's college basketball players in the nation.
The Naismith Early Season Watch List, compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club's Board of Selectors, bases its criteria on player performances from the previous year and expectations for the 2008-09 college basketball season in naming the top candidates for the Naismith Trophy. The watch list does not include incoming freshmen, although those student-athletes will be considered in the first vote in February, 2009. The Naismith Trophy presented by AT&T will be awarded at the 2009 NCAA Women's Final Four in St. Louis, Missouri.
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, founded in 1956, has presented the Naismith Trophy since UCLA's Lew Alcindor first won the award in 1969. Old Dominion's Anne Donovan won the inaugural Women's Naismith Trophy in 1983.
The Naismith Award has become an emblem of excellence for the game, recognizing the Men's and Women's College Basketball Player of the Year, Men's and Women's College Basketball Coach of the Year, as well as awards for outstanding achievement in high school basketball, officiating, and overall contribution to the game.
Last Name First Name Class Position School Allison Rachel Sr. Forward Baylor Appel Jayne Jr. Forward/Center Stanford Barlow Ashley Jr. Guard Notre Dame Black Chante Sr. Center Duke Bonner DeWanna Sr. Guard Auburn Bowman Heather Jr. Forward Gonzaga Brown Arnika So. Forward Western Kentucky Cann Jernisha Sr. Forward IUPUI Cassidy Carlee Jr. Guard Maryland - Baltimore Co. Charles Tina Jr. Center Connecticut Cirone Kristi Sr. Guard Illinois State Clark Alysha Jr. Forward Middle Tennessee Coleman Marissa Sr. Guard/Forward Maryland Criner Dellena Sr. Guard Nevada DeHaan Allyssa Jr. Center Michigan State DeLaHoussaye Tiera Sr. Guard Western Michigan Dixon Erin Sr. Forward Texas - Arlington Ellis Krystal Sr. Guard Marquette Evans Dawn So. Guard James Madison Fitz Rachele Jr. Forward Marist Guffey Amber Sr. Guard Murray State Harris Amber Jr. Forward Xavier Houghton Britni Jr. Forward Central Michigan Houts Ashley Jr. Guard Georgia Ibekwe Ify So. Forward Arizona Jackson Amber Sr. Forward North Texas Jaeschke Amy So. Center Northwestern Lavender Jantel So. Center Ohio State Lomax Judie So. Forward Columbia Marginean Gabriela Jr. Forward Drexel McCants Rashanda Sr. Guard/Forward North Carolina McCoughtry Angel Sr. Forward Louisville Mitchell Phyllisha Sr. Forward Tennessee-Martin Montgomery Renee Sr. Guard Connecticut Moore Maya So. Forward Connecticut Paris Courtney Sr. Center Oklahoma Phillips Ta'Shia So. Center Xavier Prince Epiphanny Jr. Guard Rutgers Riley Andrea Jr. Guard Oklahoma State Smith Jenna Jr. Center Illinois Starks Takia Sr. Guard Texas A&M Toliver Kristi Sr. Guard Maryland Vaughn Kia Sr. Center Rutgers Walker Ashley Sr. Forward/Center California Waner Abby Sr. Guard Duke Warburton Morgan Sr. Guard Utah Wirth Christina Sr. Forward Vanderbilt Womack Noteisha Sr. Forward Seton Hall Wright Monica Jr. Guard Virginia Zellous Shavonte Sr. Guard Pittsburgh