Warren, Thomas Finalists For State's Top Players
JACKSON Miss. - Ole Miss men’s basketball player Chris Warren was named a finalist for the 2010 Cellular South Howell Trophy while Bianca Thomas of the Rebel women’s team was selected as a finalist for the Gillom Trophy, the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum announced Monday.
The awards are given annually to the top male and female college basketball player in the state.
Warren has led Ole Miss to its fifth SEC Western Division title and a quarterfinals appearance in the NIT. He was selected to the All-SEC second team by the league coaches and Associated Press and was a USBWA All-District IV pick.
The Rebels' 5-foot-10 point guard enters Tuesday's NIT game against Texas Tech ranked third among SEC players with a 17.1 scoring average and seventh with 3.6 assists per game. He has already established a school record with 104 3s this season, breaking his own previous mark of 103 set two years ago. His current streak of 43 straight games with a triple is also a school record and tied for the third-longest in SEC history.
Thomas leads the SEC in scoring and ranks 10th in the nation with 20.9 points per game and became just the third player in school history to average over 20.0 points per game for an entire season. She turned in 19 games this season of at least 20 points, which includes a career-high and Tad Smith Coliseum record 42 points earlier this year against LSU.
Thomas also ranks second in the SEC and 10th in the nation with 3.1 three-pointers per game and set the Ole Miss single season record with 100, becoming just the fifth player in SEC history with 100 or more treys in the same season.
She also finished her career sixth all-time at Ole Miss in scoring with 1,511 career points.
The Henderson Tenn., native was tabbed All-SEC first team by both the league’s coaches and the Associated Press. She is also a candidate for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, the WBCA State Farm All-America Team and the Naismith Trophy.
The other finalists for the Howell Trophy are Mississippi State’s Jarvis Varnado and Jackson State’s Garrison Johnson. Other finalists for the Gillom Trophy are Pauline Love of Southern Miss and Alexis Rack of Mississippi State.
Four of the six finalists for Mississippi’s top male and female college basketball players this year are repeat honorees from 2009 in media voting for the Cellular South Howell Trophy and Cellular South Gillom Trophy.
The six finalists and their coaches are expected to be in attendance on Monday, March 29 when the trophy recipients are announced at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in Jackson, Miss. A 5:30 p.m. reception will be followed by the formal awards program at 6:30 p.m.
A special discounted $25 sky box ticket will be available in the upper level viewing area of the main museum for basketball fans. Floor seating is $75 per person. For more ticket information, contact the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum at 1-800-280-FAME (3263).
The annual awards are named after a pair of Mississippi basketball legends. Bailey Howell was an All-America player at Mississippi State in 1958 and 1959 before embarking on a 12-year NBA career. Peggie Gillom still ranks as Ole Miss’ all-time leading scorer with 2,486 points during her collegiate career. She has coached in the WNBA and the Olympics and recently retired after a seven-year stint as Associate Head Coach at Ole Miss.
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