ATLANTA, Ga. - - University of Oklahoma’s (OU) sophomore center and scoring sensation Courtney Paris, has been named the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) National Player of the Month for February. Paris receives the honor for the second time this season and fourth time in her career. Paris’ maniacal scoring and tenacious defense impacted the Sooners’ (23-4, 13-3) five game win streak for the month. Paris’ 29 points, 17 rebounds and three blocked shots per game average capped an OU 6 1 record in February.
No other player has received it twice in a season and Paris has accomplished the feat in each of the last two seasons. She has also garnered the recognition more than any player in the history of the award.
The monthly onslaught opened with a 41-point and 19-rebound performance against state rival Oklahoma State University. It concluded with her 55th straight double-double against Baylor while leading her team to a share of the Big 12 regular season team title. The Sooners are currently ranked #11 in the USA TODAY ESPN Division I Top 25 Coaches' Poll.
Paris continues to lead the Big 12 Conference and OU in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots. She is ranked in the top four in the nation in all three statistical categories, averaging 24 points, 16 rebounds and three blocks per game. Paris is among the 29 players selected as preseason candidates for the 2007 State Farm Wade Watch.
Last season, the sophomore center was named to the 2006 Kodak/WBCA All-America Team. She became the first player in NCAA history to record 700 points, 500 rebounds and 100 blocks in one season. She now holds the Big 12 record for points in one season, passing Edwina Brown of Texas. Paris captured Big 12 honors being named to the All-Big 12 First Team, All-Big 12 Freshman Team and All-Big 12 Defensive Team. In addition, Paris was named Big 12 Freshman of the Year and Co-Defensive Player of the Year.
Also nominated: Ashley Underwood, Maine (America East); Kamesha Hairston, Temple (Atlantic 10); Lindsey Harding, Duke (Atlantic Coast Conference); Alysha Clark, Belmont (Atlantic Sun); Angel McCoughtry, Louisville (Big East); Natalie Doma, Idaho State (Big Sky); Kelli Darden, Radford (Big South); Kemie Nkele, UC Riverside (Big West); Tyresa Smith, Delaware (Colonial Athletic); Carmen Guzman, UAB (Conference USA); Erica Davis, Yale (Ivy League); Shaunna Ambrose, Niagara University (Metro Atlantic); Carrie Moore,Western Michigan (Mid-American); Elisha Turek, Oral Roberts (Mid-Continent) Amber Bland, North Carolina A&T (Mid-Eastern Athletic); Carlai Moore, Southern Illinois (Missouri Valley); Dani Wright, Brigham Young (Mountain West); Chinata Nesbit, Robert Morris University (Northeast) Joi Scott, Murray State (Ohio Valley); Devanei Hampton, University of California (Pacific-10); Carly Meyer, Navy (Patriot League); Candace Parker, Tennessee (SEC); Shelita Burns, Jackson State University (Southwestern Athletic); Crystal Kelly, Western Kentucky (Sun Belt); Stephanie Hawk, Gonzaga (West Coast); Shan Moore, Louisiana Tech (Western Athletic).
*WBCA National Player of the Month is based on achievements during the respective month for nomination. All nominations must come from the conference office and the player’s head coach must be a member of the WBCA.
Founded in 1981, the WBCA promotes women's basketball by unifying coaches at all levels to develop a reputable identity for the sport and to foster and promote the development of the game in all of its aspects as a sport for women and girls. For more information about the WBCA, please visit WBCA.org.