INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA) This season the U.S.
Basketball Writers Association has undergone an expansion of its
weekly honors under a committee headed by Mel Greenberg, the USBWA
coordinator for women's basketball, choosing as in the past the
Ann Meyers Drysdale Women's national player, the organization's
Tamika Catchings freshman player, and new, the USBWA's women's team
of the week.
As in the past, nominees will be drawn largely from the conference
winners, but now also from individual submissions from the committee
into the pool for a final vote.
For the season's fourth honorees for games ending Sunday, Jan.
24, the U.S. Basketball Writers Association Ann Meyers Drysdale
Women's National Player of the Week goes to Louisville guard
Dana Evans, the organization's Tamika Catchings
women's freshman player honor goes to UConn guard Paige
Bueckers, and our USBWA women's team citation goes to
UCLA for performances in the voting period.
Evans, a 5-6 senior guard from Gary, Ind., averaged 23.0 points
per game, and also earned Atlantic Coast Conference player of the
week honors for protecting unbeaten Louisville's first-ever No.
1 ranking achieved the previous week. She scored 21 points and dealt
seven assists in a 67-54 home victory over then-No. 23 Syracuse
and then collected 10 of her 25 points in a fourth-quarter rally
including an old-fashioned 3-point play for the game winner with
eight seconds left to avoid being upset at unranked Wake Forest.
Bueckers, a 5-!1 rookie guard out of Hopkins, Minn., considered
the nation's top incoming blue chipper who already leads unbeaten
UConn in points, assists, steals, and three-point field goal percentage,
averaged 11.0 points, 7.5 assists, 6.5 rebounds, and 3.5 steals
in a home win over Butler and road win at then-No. 25 Tennessee.
Against the Lady Vols, she returned late in the game from rolling
her ankle earlier in the fourth quarter and with 25 seconds left
in regulation, the shot clock about to expire, and a slim two-point
lead, she nailed a long three-pointer to secure the win. She has
already won five Big East weekly top freshman honors.
As for team of the week, UCLA played just one game, but it was
big earning a close nod from the committee over a No. 4 South
Carolina squad that won three in the SEC by upsetting host then-No.
5 Stanford in the Pac-12 on the play of sophomore guard Charisma
Osborne (24 points, 9 rebounds., 3 steals), who had the winning
free throws and offensive rebound, and senior forward Michaela Onyenwere
(16 points., 10 rebounds). The triumph moved the Bruins up a notch
to fifth, matching a previous Associated Press ranking high one
week in 2017 and before that back in December 1999.
Since the 1987-88 season, the USBWA has named a womens National
Player of the Year. For the 2012-13 season, the national and weekly
player award became named for Hall of Famer and former UCLA All-American
Ann Meyers Drysdale while this is the first season the national
and weekly freshman award is being given in the name of former Tennessee
all-American Tamika Catchings.
At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name
finalists for both individual awards, which is voted on by the entire
membership of the USBWA.
The winners of the 2021 Ann Meyers Drysdale National Player of
the Year and Tamika Catchings National Freshman of the Year will
be announced and presented at the USBWAs annual awards event on
site at the 2021 NCAA Women's Final Four.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was
formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter
Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential
organizations in college basketball. It has selected a women's All-America
team since the 1996-97 season. For more information on the USBWA
and its award programs, contact executive director Malcolm Moran
2020-21 USBWA Women's Weekly Honors
Week ending Jan. 3: Michaela Onyenwere, UCLA (National); Caitlin Clark, Iowa (Freshman);
Week ending Jan. 10: Naz
Hillmon, Michigan (National); Charlisse Leger-Walker, Washington State (Freshman);
Washington State (Team)
Week ending Jan.
17: Ashley Joens, Iowa State (National); Frida Formann, Colorado (Freshman); Iowa
Week ending Jan. 24: Dana Evans,
Louisville (National); Paige Bueckers, UConn (Freshman); UCLA (Team)
Week ending Jan. 31: Chelsea Dungee, Arkansas (National);
Paige Bueckers, UConn (Freshman); Arkansas (Team)
Week ending Feb. 7: Natasha Mack, Oklahoma State (National);
Paige Bueckers, UConn (Freshman); Texas A&M (Team)
Week ending Feb. 14: Paige Bueckers, UConn (National);
Paige Bueckers, UConn and Caitlin Clark, Iowa (Freshman); UConn (Team)
Week ending Feb. 21: Maddy Siegrist, Villanova and
Kierstan Bell, Florida Gulf Coast (National); Caitlin Clark, Iowa (Freshman); Oregon
Week ending Feb. 28: Iimar'i
Thomas, Cincinnati; Caitlin Clark, Iowa (Freshman); Texas A&M (Team)