USBWA unveils 2023-24 Ann Meyers Drysdale Award and All-America Watch List

INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected 40 standout women's college basketball players for its 2023-24 Ann Meyers Drysdale Award and All-America Watch List. Members of the association's board of directors chose the players that will be considered as contenders for the National Player of the Year.

The 40 honored players for Ann Meyers Drysdale Award and All-America consideration will be placed on the association's annual awards ballot, which will be distributed to members today. The ballot also includes the Tamika Catchings National Freshman Player of the Year Award, the Women's National Coach of the Year Award and the 15-woman USBWA All-America Team. Members will have until Sunday, March 10 to vote for all of the honors that are based on regular-season performance. Write-ins will be accepted on the ballot as well.

The USBWA board will then review and verify the results so that its All-America Team, Freshman Player of the Year and National Coach of the Year will be announced before the start of the men's NCAA Tournament.

The Ann Meyers Drysdale Award winner is to be announced at the NCAA Women's Final Four in Cleveland, from April 7-9. The formal presentation of the trophy will follow at the annual USBWA Awards Luncheon hosted by the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis.

The list of 40 players is punctuated by seven past All-Americans, including the reigning Ann Meyers Drysdale Award winner, Iowa's Caitlin Clark, herself a three-time All-America selection and a past winner of the Tamika Catchings Award. Clark was selected as a national player of the week eight times this season. Clark became the all-time leading scorer in NCAA Division I women’s college basketball history earlier this month and her 32.1 points and 8.5 assists per game lead the nation.

Paige Bueckers, the USBWA's National Player and Freshman of the Year in 2020-21, regained her form after missing all of last season to be a two-time USBWA National Player of the Week this season, Bueckers is averaging career-bests in points (20.8) and rebounds (4.5) per game and is the eighth player on the list to have earned All-America honors from the USBWA.

While the Big Ten boasts five selections, the ACC and Pac-12 lead all conferences with eight representatives. Overall, 12 conferences are represented and 11 schools have teammates on the list: UConn, Iowa, LSU, North Carolina, NC State, Ohio State, Saint Joseph's, South Carolina, Stanford, UCLA and Virginia Tech

LSU's Angel Reese is the other returning first-time All-American. The Most Outstanding Player at the 2023 Final Four, she leads the nation in offensive rebounds (5.8) and free throw attempts (8.8) per game while also scoring 19.1 points per game. She is the sixth player in LSU history to score more than 2,000 points.

Stanford's Cameron Brink, Virginia Tech's Elizabeth Kitley and Utah's Alissa Pili earned second-team All-America honors a season ago. Brink, also a third-team All-American two seasons ago, is two-time USBWA National Player of the Week this season. She leads the nation in blocks per game (3.7) and is eighth in rebounds per game (11.2), while also scoring 17.7 points for the Pac-12 champs. Kitley became the ACC’s all-time leading rebounder this season and leads the nation in 2-pointers made, is eighth in points per game (23.3) and sixth in rebounding (11.6). Twice she has earned National Player of the Week recognition this season.

Pili was among the USBWA’s National Players of the Week in December and is averaging 21.7 points per game, 14th best in the nation. No player has scored more points against unbeated South Carolina this season than Pili’s 37 on Dec. 10.

UConn's Aaliyah Edwards is a two-time USBWA National Player of the Week this season and is among a pair of third-team All-Americans landing on the watch list. She is averaging 18 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game and her 14 double-doubles are the most among any Big East player this season. A season after earning third-team honors at DePaul, Aneesah Morrow is the only player in the country averaging at least 16 points, 10 rebounds and 2.5 steals per game this season for LSU. Morrow was the 2021-22 Tamika Catchings Award winner when she was second-team All-American for DePaul.

Following is the complete watch list: 

  • Georgia Amoore, Virginia Tech
  • Meghan Andersen, Fairfield
  • Raegan Beers, Oregon State
  • Lauren Betts, UCLA
  • Madison Booker, Texas
  • Cameron Brink, Stanford
  • Tayla Brugler, St. Joseph's
  • Paige Bueckers, UConn
  • Kamilla Cardoso, South Carolina
  • Kaitlyn Chen, Princeton
  • Caitlin Clark, Iowa
  • Aaliyah Edwards, UConn
  • Yvonne Ejim, Gonzaga
  • Dyaisha Fair, Syracuse
  • Lauren Gustin, BYU
  • Madison Hayes, NC State
  • Hannah Hidalgo, Notre Dame
  • McKenna Hofschild, Colorado State
  • MacKenzie Holmes, Indiana
  • Abbey Hsu, Columbia
  • Kiki Irafen, Stanford
  • Rickea Jackson, Tennessee
  • Aziaha James, NC State
  • Deja Kelly, North Carolina
  • Elizabeth Kitley, Virginia Tech
  • Kate Martin, Iowa
  • Cotie McMahon, Ohio State
  • Aneesah Morrow, LSU
  • Lucy Olsen, Villanova
  • Charisma Osborne, UCLA
  • Te-Hina Paopao, South Carolina
  • Alissa Pili, Utah
  • Ja'Naiya Quinerly, West Virginia
  • Angel Reese, LSU
  • Rachael Rose, Wofford
  • Jacy Sheldon, Ohio State
  • Jaylyn Sherrod, Colorado
  • Alyssa Ustby, North Carolina
  • JuJu Watkins, USC
  • Laura Ziegler, St. Joseph's

By conference: ACC 8, Pac-12 8, Big Ten 5, SEC 5, Big 12 3, Big East 3, Atlantic 10 2, Ivy League 2, Metro Atlantic 1, Mountain West 1, Southern 1, West Coast 1.

The Ann Meyers Drysdale Award is presented annually to the women's national player of the year by the USBWA. Named for the legendary UCLA guard, the award was first presented in the 1987-88 season and formally named in Meyers Drysdale's honor in the 2011-12 season. Ann Meyers Drysdale played at UCLA from 1974-78, which pre-dates the USBWA All-America selections. She was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993 and the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 1999.

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 Malcolm Moran at 814-574-1485.

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