Candice Wiggins Named Wooden Award Finalist
March 10, 2008
STANFORD, Calif. - Stanford senior guard Candice Wiggins, the first three-time Pac-10 Player of the Year, was one of 17 top student-athletes named to the 2008 Women's John R. Wooden Award ballot, as announced at The Los Angeles Athletic Club by John R. Wooden Award Chairman Richard 'Duke' Llewellyn. The Wooden Award winner will be announced on Saturday, April 12, during a special ceremony at The Los Angeles Athletic Club.
Wiggins, in her fourth and final year at Stanford, led the Pac-10 with 19.3 points per game, and was named Pac-10 Player of the Year for a record-breaking third time as well as to the All-Pac-10 First Team for the fourth year in a row. She also earned a first-team All-America nod from Sports Illustrated in recognition of her play and its part in leading Stanford to a record of 30-3 thus far, marking the Cardinal's seventh 30-win season.
To start the 2007-08 season, Wiggins was named to the preseason All-America teams of the Associated Press, Sports Illustrated, and ESPN, as well as to the Preseason and Midseason Watch Lists of the Wade Trophy and Naismith Trophy.
Wiggins has also continued her record-breaking crusade this season, surpassing Kate Starbird's 2,215 career points on Jan. 31 to become Stanford's all-time leading scorer, then toppling Lisa Leslie's all-time Pac-10 leading mark of 2,414 points on March 2 to become the conference's career scoring leader. Entering the NCAA Tournament, Wiggins has scored 2,478 points in her illustrious career.
Other Stanford records that Wiggins has claimed include: points per game (18.9), three-pointers made (277) and attempted (708), and free throws made (522). On the Pac-10 ledger for three-pointers made, Wiggins is currently only eight behind the leading mark of 285, held by former Arizona star Lisa Griffith (1997-2000).
A panel of more than 300 voters, comprised of sports media members and college basketball experts from around the nation, have until 3 p.m. EST on Monday, March 31 to cast their votes for the five-member women's All-American Team and Player of the Year, a long voting period that allows voters to evaluate players up through the first several rounds of the NCAA Tournament. All players on the ballots have proven to their universities that they are making progress toward graduation and are maintaining a cumulative 2.0 GPA.
Connecticut (Tina Charles and Maya Moore) and Maryland (Kristi Toliver and Crystal Langhorne) were the only two schools with two balloted players. The Big East Conference had four players chosen to the women's slate, followed by the ACC, SEC and Big 12 with three, the Sun Belt with two, and the Pac-10 and Big Sky with one apiece.
The 2008 Award ceremony, which will include the presentation of the Men's and Women's Wooden Award winners, the Wooden Award All-American Teams, and the Legends of Coaching Award to Pat Summitt of the University of Tennessee, will be held at The Los Angeles Athletic Club the weekend of April 11-12. The top five male and female finalists will be invited to Los Angeles for the awards ceremony and will receive a contribution from The Los Angeles Athletic Club for their university's general scholarship fund.
About the John R. Wooden Award
Created in 1976, the John R. Wooden Award is the most prestigious individual honor in college basketball. It is bestowed upon the nation's best player at an institution of higher education who has proven to his or her university that he or she is making progress toward graduation and maintaining a cumulative 2.0 GPA. Previous winners include LSU's Seimone Augustus and returning player Candace Parker of Tennessee.
Since its inception, the John R. Wooden Award has contributed nearly one million dollars to universities' general scholarship fund in the names of the All-American recipients and has sent more than 1,000 underprivileged children to week-long college basketball camps in the Award's name. Additionally, the John R. Wooden Award partners with Special Olympics Southern California (SOSC) each year to host the Wooden Award Special Olympics Southern California Basketball Tournament. The day-long tournament, which brings together Special Olympic athletes and the All-American players, takes place at The Los Angeles Athletic Club on the Friday of the John R. Wooden Award weekend.