Jan. 2, 2013
For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Mitch
314-795-6821
Senior forward leads upset of No. 6 Georgia
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ILLINOIS' PENN IS ANN MEYERS
DRYSDALE NATIONAL PLAYER OF THE WEEK

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected Illinois forward Karisma Penn as its Ann Meyers Drysdale Women's National Player of the Week for games ending the week of Sunday, Dec. 30. The USBWA's weekly honor will be handed out each Tuesday through Feb. 19 this season. This week's award was released today due to the New Year's Day holiday.

Penn

As the Big Ten Conference Player of the Week, Penn was nominated for the weekly award, which was chosen by a representative of the USBWA board of directors from a list of Division I conference players of the week.

Penn, a 6-2 senior from Shaker Heights, Ohio, scored 27 points on 64.7 percent shooting (11-17), grabbed a career-high 19 rebounds and had two blocked shots and a steal to lead the Illini to an 70-59 win over then-unbeaten and No. 6 Georgia. She is now Illlinois' all-time shot blocking leader, having passed former Illini great Jenna Smith.

Since the 1987-88 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. At the Women's NCAA Final Four in Denver last April, the organization announced going forward that the national and weekly player award has been named for Hall of Famer and former UCLA All-American Ann Meyers Drysdale. At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership of the USBWA. The winner of the 2013 Ann Meyers Drysdale National Player of the Year will be announced and presented at the USBWA's annual awards breakfast in New Orleans, site of the 2013 NCAA Women's Final Four.

Several other women's awards are also to be announced later this season associated with more famous names in women's basketball history. At last season's Women's Final Four it was also announced that former Tennessee coach Pat Summitt, who was the female recipient of the Most Courageous Award for her battle against early onset dementia, Alzheimer type, would have that award named in her honor.

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 Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.

2012-13 Ann Meyers Drysdale National Players of the Week
Week of Dec. 9: Maggie Lucas, Penn State (Big Ten Conference)
Week of Dec. 16: Chucky Jeffery, Colorado (Pac-12 Conference)
Week of Dec. 23: Kelsey Bone, Texas A&M (Southeastern Conference)
Week of Dec. 30: Karisma Penn, Illinois (Big Ten Conference)
Week of Jan. 6: Kayla McBride, Notre Dame (Big East Conference)
Week of Jan. 13: Brittney Griner, Baylor (Big 12 Conference)
Week of Jan. 20: Stefanie Dolson, Connecticut (Big East Conference)
Week of Jan. 27: Chiney Ogwumike, Stanford (Pac-12 Conference)
Week of Feb. 3: Khaalidah Miller, Georgia (Southeastern Conference)
Week of Feb. 10: Kelia Shelton, Louisiana Tech (Western Athletic Conference)
Week of Feb. 17: Keiera Ray, Pennsylvania (Ivy League)