Jan. 15, 2014
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Ole Miss senior point guard Valencia McFarland is one of 29 players named to the 2014 Nancy Lieberman Award Watch List it was announced by the Basketball Hall of Fame on Wednesday (Jan. 15). She is one of four players from the SEC to make the list joining Arkansas’ Calli Berna, Tennessee’s Ariel Massengale and Texas A&M’s Jordan Jones.
The award sponsored by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, recognizes the top point guard in the nation. The candidates exhibit the floor leadership, playmaking and ball-handling skills of Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman whom the award is named after.
McFarland has etched her name in Ole Miss women’s basketball history. The Edwards, Miss., native became the 16th 1,000-point scorer during her junior year and currently has 1,363 points en route to becoming one of just seven players in program history with 1,500 points. Additionally, McFarland is vying to become one of just three players in school history with 1,000 points, 500 assists and 250 steals. She is 130 assists and 112 steals away from the milestone and should she achieve the feat, will join Rebel greats Carol Ross and Glenda Springfield as the only players in program history to hit those marks.
Through her career, McFarland has dished out 362 assists and has topped 100 assists in each of her seasons in Oxford. For her career, she has posted six games of double-figure assists and set a career-best with 12 assists against Baylor earlier this season. Not only does McFarland score and dish out assists, she is also poised to become just the second player in program history to lead her team in steals all four years, joining Ole Miss great Armintie Price-Herrington. To date, McFarland has 138 steals and has posted 34 steals this season to lead the Rebels.
The Hall of Fame appointed a premier selection committee made up of top college basketball personnel, including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers to review the candidates. The list will be narrowed down to a final 20 in February, then final five by March. The Lieberman Award winner will be announced during Final Four weekend activities.
“It’s amazing to be able to have my name associated with some of the best point guards and most well-rounded female athletes at the college level,” Lieberman said. “This is the first year the award is hosted by the Hall of Fame and I think candidates will be even more aware of how
prestigious this honor is.”
Previous winners of the Nancy Lieberman Award include last year’s recipient Skylar Diggins (Notre Dame), Sue Bird (Connecticut), Renee Montgomery (Connecticut), Diana Taurasi (Connecticut), Lindsey Harding (Duke), Courtney Vandersloot (Gonzaga), Temeka Johnson (LSU), Kristi Toliver (Maryland), Ivory Latta (North Carolina), and Andrea Riley (Oklahoma State).
About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame:
Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the Birthplace of Basketball, the Naismith Memorial
Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate, men and women.
For more information:
Visit us on the web: www.hoophall.com
on Facebook: www.facebook.com/BHOF
on Twitter: @hoophall
or call 1-877-4-HOOPLA
2014 Nancy Lieberman Award Watch List:
Player Name School Name
Kacie Cassell University of Akron
Calli Berna University of Arkansas
Odyssey Sims Baylor University
Brittany Boyd University of California
Bria Hartley University of Connecticut
Senee Shearer University of Detroit Mercy
Chelsea Gray Duke University
Jerica Coley Florida International University
Yashira Delgado Florida State University
Damika Martinez Iona College
Samantha Logic University of Iowa
Lexie Brown University of Maryland
Valencia McFarland University of Mississippi
Ashley Deary Northwestern University
Tiffany Bias Oklahoma State University
Fantasia Hilliard Sacramento State University
Keena Mays Southern Methodist University
Amber Orrange Stanford University
Natasha Cloud St. Joseph’s University
Jamierra Faulkner University of Southern Mississippi
Ariel Massengale University of Tennessee
Jennifer Newsome University of Tennessee at Martin
Jordan Jones Texas A&M University
Andola Dortch University of Toledo
Joanna Harden Troy University
Jennifer Schlott Utah State University
Chelsea Douglas Wake Forest University
Rebecca Henricson Western Illinois University
Dequesha McClanahan Winthrop University
*This list is fluid – players can play their way onto and off of the Watch List and the Final 20*
Ole Miss returns to the friendly-confines to Tad Smith Coliseum on Thursday when they host Vanderbilt. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. For women’s basketball ticket information, go to OleMissTix.com or call the Ole Miss Ticket Office at 1-888-REB-TKTS (732-8587).
For all Ole Miss women’s basketball news and information, go to OleMissSports.com, and follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissWBB, Facebook at Ole Miss WBB and on Instagram at Ole Miss_WBB. Fans can also follow Ole Miss women’s basketball head coach Matt Insell on Twitter at @minsell