SAN ANTONIO (USBWA) – Six repeat members, two
freshmen, two players who are their schools' first All-Americans
and one member from each of this weekend’s Final Four teams highlight
the 2020-21 U.S. Basketball Writers Association Women's
All-America Team. Each All-American comes from a different
school, marking the first time in 16 seasons and only the sixth
time since the USBWA began awarding 10 spots on its All-America
team (1993-94) for it not to have any teammates selected.
Six different conferences are represented on a team the USBWA
composed into three units for a third consecutive season. Due to
a tie in the voting, 16 players are being honored as All-Americans
with six players making up the first team. There are six seniors
on the team – only one made the first team – to go with six juniors,
two sophomores and the pair of freshmen.
Three repeat All-Americans – sophomore forward Aliyah
Boston of South Carolina, senior guard Dana Evans
of Louisville and junior guard Rhyne Howard of
Kentucky – top the first team along with a pair of dynamic freshmen
in UConn guard Paige Bueckers and Iowa guard
Caitlin Clark. The first-team selection of Michigan
junior forward Naz Hillmon punctuates her being
the first USBWA All-American in her program’s history. Bueckers
and Clark are sharing the association's Tamika Catchings Award as
the National Freshman Player of the Year are part of a rare six-player
first team brought about by ties in the voting.
The Big 12 leads the field with its conference-record four selections
followed by three from the Southeastern, Big Ten and Pac-12 Conferences.
The Atlantic Coast earned two members and the Big East had one.
The USBWA has also recognized an additional 16 players with honorable
The six first-team members are vying for the Ann Meyers Drysdale
Award as the USBWA's National Player of the Year which will be announced
Boston, a 6-5 sophomore from St. Thomas, USVI, and South Carolina
(26-4) take on Stanford (29-2) in tonight's Final Four. Last year’s
USBWA Tamika Catchings Award winner and a second-team selection,
Boston moves to the first team in this season where she's averaging
13.8 points, 11.4 rebounds (15th nationally) and 2.6 blocks (18th)
per game. She posted a rare triple-double against Georgia this season
with 16 points, 11 rebounds and 10 blocks, only the second triple-double
in SEC history to include blocks. South Carolina has had an All-American
in six of the last seven seasons.
Bueckers is also playing tonight as UConn (28-1) enters its 13th
consecutive Final Four taking on Arizona (20-5) in the second national
semifinal. The 5-11 guard from Hopkins, Minn., was the Big East’s
Player and Freshman of the Year and leads the Huskies with 20.1
points, 5.9 assists and 2.3 steals per game to go with a 45.9-percent
three-point field goal percentage. Her 164 assists to date are a
UConn freshman record, and Bueckers is UConn’s first freshman All-American
since Maya Moore in 2008 and its third all-time. UConn has had a
first-team selection in each of the last five seasons since the
USBWA began splitting the squad into first and second (2017-18)
and then third (2018-present) teams and has now had an All-American
in nine straight seasons and in all but three since 1993-94.
Evans, the lone senior on the first team as well as her own Louisville
squad, was the ACC’s Player of the Year for a second straight season
after leading the league in scoring (20.1 ppg) and was second in
free throw percentage (87.3). She guided the Cardinals (26-4) to
a fourth straight regular-season title and a third straight NCAA
Elite Eight appearance. A second-team selection last year, Evans
is Louisville’s third repeat All-American (Asia Durr, 2018 and '19)
and Angel McCoughtry (2008 and ’09) and its seventh all-time selection
as the Cardinals join UConn and Baylor with multiple players earning
All-America honors in the past four seasons.
Howard, a first-teamer last year, is a two-time All-American
and was also on the 2018-19 team as the Freshman of the Year. The
6-2 guard from Cleveland, Tenn., is the two-time SEC Player of the
Year and entered the NCAA Tournament as the country’s only player
averaging more than 20 points per game with at least 7.3 rebounds,
50 steals and 70 assists. A team-best 56 three-pointers bolstered
her 20.7 points per game and prompted four games of 30 or more points.
Howard is only the third All-American at Kentucky, earning the school's
fifth overall award to give the Wildcats an All-America in three
Hillman, a 6-2 junior from Cleveland, Ohio, was the Big Ten Player
of the Year by the coaches and media and Michigan’s player first
to earn both awards as a unanimous all-conference first-teamer.
She averaged 23.9 points (second in the Big Ten) and 11.4 rebounds
in the regular season and led the conference in rebounding, double-doubles
(12), offensive rebounds (4.9 pg) and free throw attempts (148).
She scored 50 points at Ohio State on Jan. 21 and had a 30-20 game
Clark, a 6-0 guard from West Des Moines, Iowa, is Iowa’s third
different All-American in the last four seasons and its sixth overall.
She was the Division I scoring leader (men’s or women’s) at 26.6
points per game and also led the nation in total assists (214),
total points (799), field goals made (266), 3-pointers made (116),
and was second in assists (7.1) and 3-pointers per game (3.87).
She was the only Division I player to record 12 30-point games,
the most by any freshman since 2000. Clark is the first women’s
player at Iowa to earn national freshman of the year recognition
from any media outlet.
This is the first time since the 2005-06 season that two freshmen
made the USBWA All-America team, matching Candace Parker of Tennessee
and Courtney Paris of Oklahoma from that season. Paris became a
four-time All-American and Parker a three-time honoree before declaring
for the WNBA Draft. Boston and Howard won the last two Freshman
of the Year awards.
Final Four participants from the Pac-12, Arizona senior guard
Aari McDonald and Stanford senior guard Kiana Williams, earned second-team
honors. McDonald, a second-teamer last year, was the Pac-12 Player
of the Year and Co-Defensive Player of the Year and led Arizona
(20-5) to its best league finish (second) since 2003-04. Arizona’s
second all-time All-American, she led the Pac-12 in scoring (20.3
ppg) and steals (2.7) per game for the third straight season, the
first in conference history to do so. Williams is Stanford’s 23rd
USBWA All-America selection or award winner and its second of the
last three seasons. Williams faces South Carolina as the Cardinal’s
scoring leader at 14.3 ppg and 2.9 assists per game. Her 81 three-pointers
tie for seventh nationally and the Pac-12 Tournament MVP scored
in double figures in 26 of Stanford’s 31 games.
Elissa Cunane, a junior center at N.C. State, joins the second
team as a repeat All-American. Cunane was the nation’s top true
center and averaged 16.3 points and 8.1 rebounds with 54.1 percent
shooting that was 23rd nationally. She was First Team All-ACC and
the ACC Tournament MVP. A third-teamer last year, Cunane joins fellow
two-timer Andrea Stinson (1990 and '91) as N.C. State's only All-Americans.
Baylor forward NaLyssa Smith, the Big 12 Player of the Year and
the Big 12 Championship MVP, made the second team by leading the
Bears (28-3) in scoring (18.0 ppg) and rebounding (8.9 rpg) with
55.1 percent field goal accuracy. Baylor has had at least one All-American
in four consecutive seasons and in 11 of the last 12 seasons with
15 total selections. Charli Collier is Texas' first All-American
in 16 seasons after posting 17 double-doubles (3rd nationally) with
194 field goals made (11th). She averaged 20.1 points (26th nationally)
and 11.7 rebounds (12th) per game in the regular season.
The third team has a repeat member in Michaela Onenywere, who
joins the third team again as UCLA’s second player to become a two-time
All-American (Natalie Williams, 1993 and '94) and its second selection
in three seasons. The Pac-12 has eight All-Americans the past two
seasons and at least two in the past five seasons. The third team
also presents some historical markers – senior forward Natasha Mack
is Oklahoma State’s first All-American and senior guard Chelsea
Dungee is only Arkansas’ second and its first since 1991 (Delmonica
DeHorney). Iowa State continues to surge with its second All-American
in three seasons in junior guard/forward Ashley Joens. Sophomore
guard Ashley Owusu continues Maryland’s fine tradition as its 14th
All-American and gives the Terrapins a selection in three straight
seasons and in seven of the last nine.
This is the first time since 2005-06 for each All-America selection
to come from a different school. The USBWA began naming 10 players
to the team on the 1993-94 squad, and it’s only happened previously
on the 2003-04, 2000-01, 1997-98 and 1993-94 teams. Four of the
All-Americans hail from Texas and two from Iowa. None of the other
10 hometown states have multiple representation.
Following is the complete 2020-21 USBWA Women's All-America Team:
2020-21 USBWA WOMEN'S ALL-AMERICA TEAM
||St. Thomas, USVI
||West Des Moines, Iowa
||Dana Evans, Louisville
||Mont Belvieu, Texas
||San Antonio, Texas
||Iowa City, Iowa
mention: Kierstan Bell, Florida Gulf Coast;
Grace Berger, Indiana; Zia Cooke, South Carolina; Mia
Davis, Temple; Rennia Davis, Tennessee; Arella
Guirantes, Rutgers; Anastasia Hayes, Middle Tennessee;
Haley Jones, Stanford; Tiana Mangakahia, Syracuse; Nancy
Mulkey, Rice; Olivia Nelson-Ododa, UConn; N’dea Jones,
Texas A&M; Charlisse Leger-Walker, Washington State;
DiDi Richards, Baylor; Maddy Siegrist, Villanova;
Christyn Williams, UConn.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association, formed
in 1956, has named a women's All-America team since the 1987-88
season. The association has also named a national player of the
year – now known as the Ann Meyers Drysdale Award – since 1987-88
and a national coach of the year since 1989-90. In 2002-03, the
USBWA initiated an award for the nation's top freshman, which is
now named for Tamika Catchings. For more information on the USBWA
and its awards, contact executive director Malcom Moran at 814-574-1485.
All-Time USBWA Women's All-America