For the second straight season, Baylor guard Odyssey Sims is one of five women’s players selected to the John. R. Wooden Award’s All-America team The Los Angeles Athletic Club announced today.
Sims and Stanford forward Chiney Ogwumike are the only two repeat selections. The tandem is joined by Notre Dame guard Kayla McBride, UConn forward Breanna Stewart and Maryland forward Alyssa Thomas. McBride, Ogwumike, Sims and Thomas are all seniors while Stewart is a sophomore.
Voting by college basketball media members from throughout the nation took place from March 12 through 25, allowing voters to take into account play through the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. The All-America Team is made up of the five student-athletes who received the highest point total over that period. All players have proven to their universities that they are making progress toward graduation and are maintaining at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA, an important component of the Award insisted upon by Coach Wooden.
Created in 1976, the John R. Wooden is bestowed upon the nation’s best player at an institution of higher education who has proven to his or her university that he or she is making progress toward graduation and maintaining a minimum cumulative 2.0 GPA. Previous winners include such notables as Larry Bird (’79), Michael Jordan (’84), Tim Duncan (’97), Candace Parker (’07 and ’08), Kevin Durant (’09) and Maya Moore of Connecticut (’09 and '11). Baylor’s Brittney Griner won the 2013 John R. Wooden Award.
Since its inception, the John R. Wooden Award has contributed close to a million dollars to universities’ general scholarship fund in the names of the All-American recipients. The Award has also sent more than 1,000 underprivileged children to week-long college basketball camps in the Award’s name. Additionally, the John R. Wooden Award partners with Special Olympics Southern California (SOSC) each year to host the Wooden Award Special Olympics Southern California Basketball Tournament. The day-long tournament, which brings together Special Olympic athletes and the All Americans, takes place at The Los Angeles Athletic Club the weekend of the John R. Wooden Award Ceremony.
The 5-8 senior guard finished her senior season averaging 28.5 ppg, which ranks No. 2 nationally, as well as 4.7 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.0 steals. She shot .446 from the floor, .398 from 3-point range and .808 from the free throw line.
Sims, with 1,054 points in 2013-14, became just the second NCAA Division I women's player to score over 1,000 points in a season. Jackie Stiles (Missouri State) set the record in 2000-01 with 1,062 points.
The Irving, Texas, native continues to add to her accolades, Sims has been named an All-American by both The Associated Press and the United States Basketball Writers Association and is a Wade Trophy and Naismith Trophy finalist. She was named to the Notre Dame Regional’s All-Tournament team as well as being named Big 12 Conference Player of the Year, Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and first-team All-Big 12 four times.