Onyenwere Named Candidate for Senior CLASS Award
Overland Park, Kan. – Senior forward Michaela Onyenwere has been named a candidate for the 2020-21 Senior CLASS Award, the award announced Monday. The candidates selected are those who excel both on and off the court, and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character, and competition.
Onyenwere is one of 30 candidates selected from the pool of NCAA Women's Basketball seniors. Per the official release from the Senior CLASS Award, the women's and men's lists will be narrowed to two lists of 10 finalists in late February, and those names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches, and fans, who will then select one female and one male winner of the award. The winners will be announced during the 2021 NCAA Women's Final Four and NCAA Men's Final Four.
Off the court, Onyenwere has had a tremendous impact on UCLA Women's Basketball's social justice efforts this season, as she helped establish the team's More Than a D.R.E.A.M. initiative in response to the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Onyenwere and her teammates created this initiative to raise awareness to racial injustice and promote prominent Black societal figures, as well as highlight Black-owned businesses in Los Angeles. Onyenwere has helped lead discussions with team alumni about racial injustices and the future of black culture in the United States. Onyenwere's leadership is further on display in her role as a team captain and mentor to various young players on the Bruins' roster. She is a regular participant in the team's weekly media sessions and has become a true ambassador of the program.
Onyenwere's on-court accomplishments are extensive, to say the least, as she has become one of the all-time greats to play at UCLA. She is currently tied for 12th on UCLA's all-time scoring list with 1,685 points and opened the 2020-21 season as a Preseason AP All-American. She has garnered All-Pac-12 accolades in back-to-back seasons and has helped lead UCLA to Elite 8 and Sweet 16 appearances in her freshman and sophomore seasons, respectively.
About the Award
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award honors the attributes of senior student-athletes in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition. The award program is designed exclusively for college seniors who are utilizing their complete athletic eligibility, remaining committed to their university and pursuing the many rewards a senior season can bring. Premier Sports Management manages the award.