Stanford's Ogwumike named to Wade Watch list

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Courtesy of Stanford Athletics

STANFORD, Calif. - STANFORD junior forward and 2012 All-American Chiney Ogwumike is the lone Pac-12 representative on the 2012-13 Wade Watch list released Tuesday morning that features 25 standout candidates for State Farm Wade Trophy.

Tuesday's announcement marks the second-straight year that Ogwumike has been included on the list.

The preseason list is composed of top NCAA Division I women's basketball players who best embody Wade's spirit from 18 institutions and eight conferences. A committee of coaches, administrators and media from across the United States compiled the list using the following criteria: game and season statistics, leadership, character, effect on their team and overall playing ability.

The honor will be presented at the 2013 Final Four set to be held in New Orleans April 7 and 9.

Ogwumike enters 2012-13 following a sophomore campaign in which she was named to the WBCA Coaches' All-America Team and Associated Press All-America second team, as well as a finalist for the Wade Trophy and the WBCA's Defensive Player of the Year award. She averaged 15.0 points and 10.1 rebounds a game, in addition to ranking fourth nationally with a 58.3 field-goal percentage. Her scoring and rebounding averages made her, along with her older sister Nnemkadi Ogwumike (22.5 ppg, 10.2 rpg), one of just five Cardinal players to average a double-double in a single season, joining Nicole Powell (2003-04), Jeanne Ruark (1979-80) and Kathy Murphy (1977-78).
For the second straight season Ogwumike was named to the All-Pac-12 Team and Pac-12 All-Defensive Team. Ogwumike's defensive prowess, which featured 45 blocks and 28 steals in her role often defending the opposition's top post player, led to her becoming the second Stanford player to be named the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year.

In late August Ogwumike teamed up with two other members of the Wade Watch list, Skylar Diggins of Notre Dame and Bria Hartley of Connecticut, along with Ann Strother, at the inaugural FIBA 3x3 World Championship. The quartet captured the gold with a thrilling 17-16 victory over France in the final and for Ogwumike it was her third FIBA gold medal earned in a USA Basketball uniform.

Entering her third year on The Farm Ogwumike is 35 points away from becoming the 33rd member of Stanford's 1,000-Point Club and her 655 rebounds have her on pace to threaten Kayla Pedersen's Cardinal and Pac-12 career record of 1,266 rebounds before her splendid career is through.

Stanford, owners of the nation's longest current home winning streak at 79 games, dating back to Nov. 28, 2007, opens the 2012-13 season Nov. 9 hosting the Fresno State Bulldogs. The Cardinal's upcoming slate feature contests against seven NCAA Tournament teams from a year ago, including defending national champion Baylor (Nov. 16 at the Jack in the Box Rainbow Wahine Classic in Honolulu), fellow five-time consecutive Final Four participant Connecticut (Dec. 29 at Maples Pavilion) in addition to road dates opposite regional finalist Tennessee (Dec. 22) and regional semifinalists Gonzaga (Dec. 2) and South Carolina (Dec. 19).

The 12-time defending Pac-12 Champion Cardinal puts it crown on the line once more as Pac-12 play gets underway Jan.4 at Colorado. Stanford enters the conference season on a record 78-game winning streak against Pac-12 teams and will also seek its 10th Pac-12 Tournament title from March 7-10 at Key Arena in Seattle.

Stanford will also serve as a 2013 NCAA Tournament First- and Second-Round host site over the weekend of March 23-26.

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