Onyenwere Named to Wooden Award Top 30 Watch List

Michaela Onyenwere has been named to the Top 30 watch list for the John R. Wooden Award Presented by Wendy's, the award announced Tuesday. The honor is presented annually to the most outstanding player in college basketball.

The full list was revealed on the 9:00 a.m. PT hour of SportsCenter on ESPN. The award is named for John Wooden, legendary UCLA men's basketball coach. Coach Wooden led the Bruin program from 1948-75 and won a record 10 national championships at the helm.

Onyenwere entered the 2020-21 season coming off a junior campaign that saw her post career highs in points (18.9 ppg) and rebounds (8.5 rpg) and AP Third Team All-America accolades. The Aurora, Colo., native put up 22 points and eight rebounds in her season debut against Cal State Fullerton (Nov. 27), helping the Bruins secure a 98-49 victory on opening night.

Onyenwere's placement on the Wooden Award Top 30 adds to her already extensive list of early season accolades. She has been named to the Naismith Trophy preseason watch list for the collegiate player of the year, as well as the Cheryl Miller Award watch list for the nation's top small forward. She has also received preseason AP All-America and preseason All-Pac-12 honors

The players on the list are considered strong candidates for the 2021 John R. Wooden Award Women's Player of the Year presented by Wendy's. Players not chosen to the preseason list are still eligible for the Wooden Award™ midseason list, late season list, and the National Ballot. The Wooden Award All American Team™ will be announced the week of the "Elite Eight" round of the NCAA Tournament. The winner of the 2021 John R. Wooden Award will be presented by Wendy's following the NCAA Tournament in April.

About the John R. Wooden Award

Created in 1976, the John R. Wooden Award Program hosts the most prestigious honors in college basketball recognizing The Wooden Award Most Outstanding Player for men and women, The Wooden Award All American Teams for men and women and the annual selection of the Wooden Award Legend of Coaching recipient. Honorees have proven to their university that they meet or exceed the qualifications of the John R. Wooden Award as set forth by Coach Wooden and the Wooden Award Steering Committee, including making progress towards graduation and maintaining at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA. Previous winners include Larry Bird ('79), Michael Jordan ('84), Tim Duncan ('97), Kevin Durant ('07), Candace Parker ('07; '08), Maya Moore ('09; '11), Chiney Ogwumike ('14), Breanna Stewart ('15 and '16) and last year's recipients, Sabrina Ionescu of Oregon and Obi Toppin of Dayton.


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