Jill Barta Named Cheryl Miller Award National Finalist
Jan. 31, 2018
SPRINGFIELD, MASS. – The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association announced today that Jill Barta is one of the 10 candidates for the 2018 Cheryl Miller Award. Named after the three-time Naismith Player of the Year and 1995 inductee of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, the annual award in its inaugural year recognizes the top small forwards in women’s NCAA Division I college basketball.
The initial list of candidates was announced on November 8 with 20 total selections. Barta, a two-time First Team All-WCC and a WCC All-Freshman team selection, received her second-straight Preseason All-WCC nod this year. She has already been selected as the West Coast Conference Player of the Week three times and currently, Barta leads the Zags in points per game (18.5), rebounds per game (8.5), free throw percentage (.840), and double-doubles (8). She is second in the conference in points per game, fifth in rebounds, second in free throw percentage, fourth in field goal percentage (.494), and first in double-doubles. On the national level, she is 66th in points per game and 58th in free throw percentage.
Barta is the only representative from the West region on the list.
“When it comes to small forwards, no one has done it better than Cheryl Miller, and the young women recognized on this list should be honored to be associated with one of the game’s all-time greats,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “Cheryl’s expertise as a dominate player, winning coach and professional analyst will be highly valuable as we evaluate the ten candidates remaining.”
The Selection Committee for the Cheryl Miller Award is composed of top women’s college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers. In March, five finalists will be presented to Ms. Miller and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee. Fans will also have the opportunity to vote for their favorite finalists to determine the Naismith Starting 5 at www.hoophallawards.com.
The winner of the 2018 Cheryl Miller Small Forward Award will be announced during ESPN2’s telecast of the national semifinal games in the 2018 NCAA Women’s Final Four in Columbus, Ohio on Friday, March 30. Additional awards being presented include the Nancy Lieberman Point Guard Award, the Ann Meyers Drysdale Shooting Guard Award, the Katrina McClain Power Forward Award, and the Lisa Leslie Center Award, as well as the Wade Trophy, the sport’s oldest and most prestigious national player of the year award which is presented annually by the WBCA’s community of coaches to the best player in college women’s basketball.
For more information on the 2018 Cheryl Miller Award, visit www.hoophallawards.com.
2018 Cheryl Miller Award Candidates
About Cheryl Miller: Cheryl Miller took women's basketball to a new level, literally and figuratively. With her tremendous leaping ability, athletic dexterity and grace, Miller established a legacy throughout her high school and college career that is unparalleled. Playing for Riverside Polytechnic High School (CA), in 1982, Miller set the single game scoring record of 105 points. As a collegiate forward at the University of Southern California from 1982 to 1986, Miller helped bring women's basketball to the forefront of American sports. In 1984, she led the Olympic team to gold averaging more than 16 points per game. Her superior athletic ability and engaging persona placed her among the elite in the world of college and professional athletics. In 1986, Sports Illustrated named Miller as the best male or female player in college basketball. In a spectacular career, Miller scored 3,018 total career points and was a four-time All-America. Miller was named Naismith Player of the Year three times and earned the Wade Trophy once. Miller was indicted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 1999 and the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2010. Since retiring from professional play, Miller has had a very successful career as a WNBA GM, professional and collegiate coach, and sportscaster for TNT, ESPN and NBC for the 1996 Olympics.
About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame: Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the city where basketball was invented, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate and high school, for both men and women on the global stage.
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About the WBCA: Founded in 1981, the Women's Basketball Coaches Association is the professional association for coaches of women's and girls' basketball at all levels of competition. The WBCA offers educational resources that coaches need to help make themselves better leaders, teachers and mentors to their players; provides opportunities for coaches to connect with peers in the profession; serves as the unifying voice of a diverse community of coaches to those organizations that control the game; and celebrates those coaches, players and other individuals who excel each year and contribute to the advancement of the sport.
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