ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers
Association and the Missouri Athletic Club
have joined forces for a college basketball awards dinner on April
9 at the MAC's downtown location in St. Louis.
USBWA and the MAC will partner on the dinner that will feature presentation
of the Oscar Robertson Trophy to the national collegiate
player of the year, the Wayman Tisdale Award to
the freshman of the year and the Henry Iba Award
to the coach of the year. In addition, former Missouri and Hall
of Fame coach Norm Stewart and retired referee
Ed Hightower each will receive lifetime achievement
"The MAC was the first to host this event in 2005," said USBWA
president Vahé Gregorian, sports columnist for The Kansas City
Star. "We are delighted to renew a partnership with the MAC and
look forward to sharing this occasion with them."
"Hosting the USBWA awards fits perfectly with our Club's long
history of celebrating excellence in amateur athletics," said Missouri
Athletic Club Basketball Chairman Kevin Cantwell. "It's a tradition
that goes back to the inception of our Club when MAC athletes participated
in the 1904 Olympics and it continues today with our annual presentation
of college soccer's Hermann Trophy. It's an honor that the USBWA
has chosen the MAC to host the top awards in college basketball."
Reservations to the banquet are now available to MAC members
by calling 314-539-4470. Reservations will be open to the public
through collegebasketballawards.eventbrite.com beginning Tuesday,
Feb. 20, at 10 a.m.
The player of the year award is named after one of the greatest
players in college history, three-time All-American Oscar Robertson.
The Robertson Trophy is the only player of the year award named
for a player. The USBWA named the award after Robertson in 1998.
The Tisdale Award is named in honor of the late Oklahoma great,
Wayman Tisdale. Tisdale was a three-time All American and in 1983,
became the first freshman to be named an All- American by the USBWA.
Tisdale passed away in 2009 following a courageous battle with cancer.
The legendary Henry Iba is recognized as one of the greatest
coaches of all time. He won 655 games and coached the U.S. Olympic
teams to gold medals in 1964 and 1968 and a silver medal in 1972.
Stewart, a cancer survivor, is credited with creating the "Coaches
vs. Cancer" program. The concept evolved into a nationwide effort
to fight cancer and promote cancer awareness and prevention. Since
1993, the charity has raised over $100 million for the American
Stewart is a coaching icon. He coached 32 years at Missouri and
posted a 634-333 career record. He led the Tigers to eight Big Eight
Conference regular-season championships, six tournament titles and
16 NCAA Tournament appearances. He was elected to the College Basketball
Hall of Fame in 2007. A bronze statue of Stewart was erected last
year in front of the Mizzou Arena.
Hightower is regarded as one of the best referees ever to work
college games. He was voted the Naismith Division 1 Men's College
Basketball Official of the Year in 1992. He worked 12 NCAA Final
Fours and was assigned to some of the biggest games in the country
for nearly every major conference. He retired from officiating in
2013. A lifelong educator with 41 years of service in education,
Hightower was superintendent of Edwardsville (Ill.) School District
No. 7 before retiring in 2015.
ABOUT THE USBWA
Formed in 1956, the United States Basketball Writers Association
celebrated its 62nd year this season. The organization is comprised
of some 900 members who cover college basketball for newspapers,
magazines and websites. The primary goal of the USBWA has remained
the same since its inception – to serve the interests of its members
and to promote college basketball.
The USBWA annually selects a national player, coach and freshman
of the year in college basketball and All-America teams for both
men and women. The men's player of the year award is named in honor
of former Cincinnati All-American and NBA legend Oscar Robertson,
who was the first recipient of the USBWA's player of the year award
in 1959. The women's award is named for former UCLA standout Ann
The USBWA men's coach of the year award is named for legendary
Olympic and Oklahoma A&M, now Oklahoma State, coaching great
Henry Iba. The men's freshman of the year award honors the late
Oklahoma All-American Wayman Tisdale.
The USBWA conducts a sports writing workshop annually at the
NCAA Final Four for college and high school students. The USBWA
also awards scholarships to students pursuing careers in sports
journalism and to the sons and daughters of current members. Past
and present members of the USBWA are also inducted each year into
the USBWA Hall of Fame, honoring those who have made significant
contributions to the USBWA and to the sports journalism profession.
In addition, the USBWA presents a Most Courageous Award for men
and the Pat Summitt Courage Award for women to a player, coach,
official or administrator in college basketball who demonstrates
extraordinary courage in life. The USBWA also honors individuals
in college basketball with the Katha Quinn Award for men and the
Mary Jo Haverbeck Award for women for service to the media or for
the inspiration they provide to those in the sports journalism profession.
ABOUT THE MISSOURI ATHLETIC CLUB
The Missouri Athletic Club was established in 1903 with the mission
to be the premier athletic, business, social and dining club in
the St. Louis region for its members and their families. Today,
the MAC is recognized as a "Platinum Club of America," an honor
that places it in the top 5% of private clubs in the country. The
MAC has two locations – the historic Downtown Clubhouse and the
West County Clubhouse located in Town & Country.
"Athletic" has been at the center of MAC life since inception
more than a century ago, when Club officials and athletes participated
in the 1904 Olympic Games. That tradition of promoting athletic
excellence has continued throughout its history and remains strong
today through a variety of events. The MAC sponsors the annual High
School Soccer All-Star Games at the Soccer Park. Since 1970, the
MAC has hosted the Jack Buck Awards to honor the top sports figures
in St. Louis. Since 1986, the MAC has annually presented the Hermann
Trophy to the top male and female collegiate soccer players in the