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BU's Brown named Naismith semifinalist


Baylor women’s basketball junior Kalani Brown is one of 10 semifinalists for the Citizen Naismith Trophy Women’s College Player of the Year award, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Monday morning.

The 6-7 center is the lone representative from the Big 12 on the list and is one of four juniors included.

“These 10 women represent the most outstanding players at the college level,” said Eric Oberman, executive director of the Atlanta Tipoff Club. “As many of them lead their teams into the postseason, we are excited to see them compete for the Citizen Naismith Trophy Women’s College Player of the Year honor, and we look forward to welcoming one of them to the Naismith family.”

“We are thrilled to support these 10 women who have accomplished so much this season, both on and off the court,” said Eric Horowitz, managing director U.S. and travel retail, Citizen Watch Company of America, Inc. “These players are the best of the best, and we look forward to seeing who will be honored as the Citizen Naismith Trophy Women’s College Player of the Year.”

Brown leads the Lady Bears field goal percentage (.660), scoring (19.9) and rebounding (10.1) averaging a double-double through 28 games played this season. She leads the conference, and ranks fourth nationally in field goal percentage, and has scored more points (582) than any other Big 12 player this season.

Brown owns the top two rebounding performances in the Big 12 this season, registering 23 at No. 21/22 Oklahoma State, which ranks 10th nationally, and 21 against Lamar, which ranks 26th nationally. She has compiled 14 double-doubles, two 30-point performances, two 20-point, 10-rebound contests, 15 20-point efforts, two 20-rebound performances and 14 10-rebound games.

The Slidell, La., native became the 34th player in Lady Bear history to reach the 1,000-career points mark, netting a season-high 33 points in the fourth game of the regular season at No. 8/7 UCLA on Nov. 18. She has since risen to No. 12 on Baylor’s all-time scoring list (1,478).

Brown is also included on the 2018 John R. Wooden Award Wendy’s Late Season 20 and 2018 Wade Trophy Midseason player of the year lists and is one of 10 finalists for the Lisa Leslie Award, which honors the nation’s top center.

From this list, the Naismith Awards master voting academy will identify four national finalists, which will be announced on March 16. Fans will then be able to vote for their favorite player at naismithtrophy.com/vote between March 19-30 to cast their ballot. The fan component accounts for five percent of the overall final vote. The winner of the Citizen Naismith Trophy for Women’s Player of the Year will be announced on March 31.

Brittney Griner is the only player in Lady Bear to be named the Naismith Trophy Women’s College Player of the Year (2012, 2013). Sophia Young was a finalist in 2006.

Women’s Citizen Naismith Trophy Semifinalists

Kalani Brown, Baylor

Jordin Canada, UCLA

Asia Durr, Louisville

Sabrina Ionescu, Oregon

Kelsey Mitchell, Ohio State

Arike Ogunbowale, Notre Dame

Katie Lou Samuelson, UConn

Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State

Gabby Williams, UConn

A’ja Wilson, South Carolina

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