Blue, Quinn, Willis Selected As Pre-Season Naismith Candidates

Jan. 12, 2006

UCLA guards Nikki Blue, Noelle Quinn and Lisa Willis were named as pre-season candidates for the Naismith Trophy presented by Cingular Wireless. The Naismith Trophy is the most prestigious national award presented annually to the men's and women's players of the year.

The Top 50 list was compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club's Board of Selectors, comprised of leading basketball journalists, coaches and administrators from around the country. The board based its pre-season criteria on player performances from last season.

'The pre-season candidates represent an elite level of student-athlete in women's college basketball,' said Gary Stokan, Atlanta Sports Council president. 'Any of these players would make an outstanding Naismith Trophy winner.'

Blue is also a pre-season nominee for the Wooden Award, Wade Trophy and Bayer Senior CLASS Award. This season, she leads the Pac-10 in assists with a 5.4 average, which ranks in the Top 30 nationally. She also ranks fourth in the conference in steals (2.47) and averages 12.3 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. She is ranked ninth on UCLA's all-time scoring list with 1,580 points and is fourth on the Bruins' assist list with 494.

Quinn, a Wooden Award pre-season nominee, ranks second in the Pac-10 in rebounding (7.8), fifth in scoring (16.5) and sixth in assists (3.6). She has three double-doubles this season, along with four 20-point scoring games. Quinn has 18 career 20-point games, and the Bruins are 17-1 all-time in those games.

Willis, who is also up for the Bayer Senior CLASS Award, is UCLA's leading scorer with a 19.5 average, which ranks 25th nationally and second in the Pac-10. Willis also ranks seventh nationally in steals with a 4.0 average and last week became the Pac-10's all-time steals leader with 317 and counting. She is UCLA's career three-point leader with 219 three-point shots made (third on the Pac-10 career charts) and ranks 11th on UCLA's career scoring charts with 1,390 points. Willis leads the Pac-10 with nine 20-point scoring games this season.

UCLA is one of just five schools with three or more players on the pre-season list, joining Duke (four players), Tennessee, North Carolina and Connecticut (three each).

In January, the Board of Selectors will narrow its pre-season 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.

Cingular Wireless will again utilize the largest wireless network in the country and give fans a voice in the voting process through the power and ease of text messaging. Last year, more than 3 million fans participated in selecting the Naismith Trophy winner - accounting for 25% of the determining vote. This program sets the standard in terms of integrating fans into the voting process, giving fans more input than with any other national sports award.

The pre-season candidates for the Naismith Trophy presented by Cingular Wireless, listed in alphabetical order, are as follows:


2005-2006 Top 50 Pre-Season Candidates

First Name

Last Name

Height

Year

Position

School

Matee

Ajavon

5'8"

So.

G

Rutgers

Seimone

Augustus

6'1"

Sr.

G

LSU

Alison

Bales

6'7"

Jr.

C

Duke

Nikki

Blue

5'8"

Sr.

G

UCLA

Lindsay

Bowen

5'7"

Sr.

G

Michigan State

Meg

Bulger

6'0"

Jr.

G

WVU

Jazz

Covington

6'3"

Jr.

C

Louisville

Tasha

Crain-Williams

5'7"

Sr.

G

Louisianna Tech

Monique

Currie

6'0"

Sr.

G/F

Duke

Chesley

Dabbs

6'0"

Sr.

G

Texas Tech

Jessica

Davenport

6'5"

Jr.

C

Ohio State

Dee

Davis

5'7"

Jr.

G

Vanderbilt

Shay

Doron

5'9"

Jr.

G

Maryland

Megan

Duffy

5'7"

S

G

Notre Dame

Candice

Dupree

6'2"

S

F/C

Temple

Emily

Faurholt

5'11"

S

F

Idaho

Sylvia

Fowles

6'6"

So.

C

LSU

Katie

Gearlds

6'1"

Jr.

G/F

Purdue

Erin

Grant

5'8"

Sr.

G

Texas Tech

Lindsey

Harding

5'8"

Jr.

G

Duke

Alexis

Hornbuckle

5'11"

So.

G

Tennessee

Brandie

Hoskins

5'9"

Jr.

G

Ohio State

Charde

Houston

6'1"

So.

F

UConn

Tasha

Humphrey

6'3"

So.

F

Georgia

Tiffany

Jackson

6'3"

Jr.

F

Texas

Tamara

James

5'10"

Sr.

G/F

Miami

Crystal

Kelly

6'3"

So.

F

Western Kentucky

Crystal

Langhorne

6'2"

So.

C/F

Maryland

Erlana

Larkins

6'1"

So.

F

North Carolina

Ivory

Latta

5'6"

Jr.

G

North Carolina

Camille

Little

6'2"

Jr.

G/F

North Carolina

Candace

Parker

6'3"

F (RS)

F

Tennessee

Cappie

Pondexter

5'9"

Sr.

G

Rutgers

Shawntinice

Polk

6'5"

Sr.

C

Arizona

Armintie

Price

5'9"

Jr.

G

Ole Miss

Noelle

Quinn

6'0"

Jr.

G

UCLA

Leah

Rush

6'1"

Jr.

F

Oklahoma

Liz

Shimek

6'1"

Sr.

F

Michigan State

Khara

Smith

6'2"

Sr.

F

DePaul

Brooke

Smith

6'3"

Jr.

C

Stanford

Kim

Smith

6'1"

Sr.

F

Utah

Tiffany

Stansbury

6'3"

Sr.

F/C

NC State

Ann

Strother

6'3"

Sr.

G/F

Uconn

Carla

Thomas

6'3"

Jr.

F

Vanderbilt

Barbara

Turner

6'0"

Sr.

G/F

Uconn

Candice

Wiggins

5'11"

So.

G

Stanford

Mistie

Williams

6'3"

Sr.

F

Duke

Lisa

Willis

5'11"

Sr.

G

UCLA

Sophia

Young

6'1"

Sr.

F

Baylor

Shanna

Zolman

5'10"

Sr.

G

Tennessee

Categories:
Now on Pac-12 Network
Live
7:00 PM PT

Airing on:

  • Pac-12 Network
Get Pac-12 Networks
Unable to get Pac-12 Network?
Contact your provider ▶
Pac-12 Networks Channel Finder
Close