The Big Ten Conference featured prominently in a number of awards that were presented by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) last weekend during the WBCA National Convention and the NCAA Women’s Final Four in Dallas.
Maryland guard Destiny Slocum was named the inaugural recipient of the WBCA Division I Freshman of the Year award, while Ohio State’s Kelsey Mitchell earned a spot on the WBCA Coaches’ All-America Team for the second consecutive season. With Mitchell’s selection, at least one student from a current Big Ten school has now appeared on the WBCA Coaches’ All-America Team every year since 1999.
Slocum was named the 2016-17 Big Ten Freshman of the Year after ranking third on the Terrapins’ roster in scoring (11.6 ppg.) and second in the Big Ten in assists (6.0 apg. – first during conference play at 7.5 apg.). She also finished sixth in the conference in three-point field goals per game (2.1) and 12th in three-point percentage (.374), while helping Maryland to a share of its third consecutive Big Ten Championship and its third Big Ten Tournament title in as many years.
A two-time Big Ten Player of the Year (including this past season) and a two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, Mitchell tied for the Big Ten scoring title this year (22.6 ppg.) while ranking second in three-pointers per game (3.3) and 13th in both three-point percentage (.369) and assists (3.9 apg.). She was instrumental in pacing Ohio State to a share of the Big Ten Championship, the program’s record-setting 15th conference title and first since 2010.
Heading into her senior season in 2017-18, Mitchell ranks fifth in Big Ten history with 2,553 career points, 540 behind Big Ten career scoring leader Rachel Banham of Minnesota (3,093 from 2011-16) and 974 back of the NCAA Division I record holder for career points, Washington’s Kelsey Plum (3,527 from 2012-16). Mitchell already owns the Big Ten record with 368 career three-point field goals made, topping the previous standard of 365 by Penn State’s Maggie Lucas from 2010-14.
Seven other Big Ten students received WBCA Coaches’ All-America Team honorable mention accolades last weekend. Indiana’s Tyra Buss, Maryland’s Brionna Jones and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough, Michigan’s Katelynn Flaherty, Michigan State’s Tori Jankoska, Northwestern’s Nia Coffey and Penn State’s Teniya Page all were recognized by the WBCA.
For the full rundown of the 2016-17 WBCA Coaches’ All-America Team selections, CLICK HERE.