March 31, 2010
WACO, Texas - The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has chosen the recipients of its 2009-10 women's postseason honors. Connecticut's Tina Charles is the National Player of the Year, while Nebraska coach Connie Yori is the National Coach of the Year and Baylor's Brittney Griner is the National Freshman of the Year. All three selections will be honored at he USBWA Women's Awards Breakfast on Tues., April 6 in San Antonio.
Griner, a 6-8 freshman, has set numerous NCAA Division I, Big 12 Conference and Baylor records this season with her shot-blocking prowess, establishing a new single-season block mark with 218. She recently broke the NCAA Tournament blocked shot record, rejecting 35 through four tournament contests with at least one more game to go.
Griner has led the 27-9 Baylor squad to the NCAA Women's Final Four this season for the second time in school history. She is averaging 18.6 points, 8.6 rebounds and a nation's-leading 6.4 blocks per game.
The Houston native was recently named the Memphis Regional's Most Outstanding Player after leading Baylor to NCAA Tournament victories over top-seeded and No. 3 ranked Tennessee and second-seeded and sixth-ranked Duke. In four games of NCAA Tournament play, she is averaging 16.8 points, 8.0 rebounds and 8.8 blocks per game.
In addition, Griner has been named AP All-America second team, to the WBCA/State Farm All-Region 5 team and earned the Big 12 Conference's Freshman of the Year, Co-Defensive Player of the Year and to the All-Big 12 first team, All-Defensive team and All-Freshman team.
Griner is the first Lady Bear and third Big 12 Conference playe to earn the honor, joining Oklahoma's Courtney Paris and Texas' Tiffany Jackson .
A complete listing of USBWA Freshman of the Year awards follow:
2002-03 - Seimone Augustus, LSU
2003-04 - Tiffany Jackson, Texas
2004-05 - Tasha Humphrey, Georgia; Candice Wiggins, Stanford
2005-06 - Courtney Paris, Oklahoma
2006-07 - Tina Charles, Connecticut
2007-08 - Maya Moore, Connecticut
2008-09 - Shekinna Stricklen, Tennessee
2009-10 - Brittney Griner, Baylor