McDermott and Ogwumike win Wooden Award
LOS ANGELES (AP) Doug McDermott of Creighton accepted the John R. Wooden Award on Friday night, one of several honors the senior won this year as college basketball’s player of the year.
The women’s award went to Chiney Ogwumike of Stanford in a ceremony at the Los Angeles Athletic Club.
McDermott received 3,930 points in nationwide voting that went through the first three rounds of the NCAA tournament. He was announced as the winner last week at the Final Four in Arlington, Texas. Jabari Parker of Duke finished second with 2,569 points.
McDermott’s father, Greg, who coached his son at Creighton, was on hand. The Blue Jays lost in the third round of the NCAA tourney.
”The best thing about Doug is he’s a great teammate,” his father said. ”Most people that watched us practice would not be able to tell we were father and son and that’s the way we wanted it.”
The younger McDermott was presented with the award by Wooden’s grandson Greg.
”I never got satisfied,” McDermott said. ”I stuck it out for four years. That’s why it’s so great seeing other seniors be here with me. We’re guys who decided to get better every year.”
Among the other trophies won by McDermott were from The AP and the U.S. Basketball Writers Association.
Russ Smith of Louisville finished third with 2,228 points, followed by Cleanthony Early of Wichita State with 1,907, and Nick Johnson of Arizona with 1,758.
McDermott was the nation’s leading scorer with 26.7 points per game this season. He finished his career as the NCAA’s fifth-leading scorer with 3,150 points. He was a previous three-time finalist for the Wooden Award.
Ogwumike received the award from Wooden’s grandson, Craig Impelman. Her coach, Tara VanDerveer, and her sister, Nneka Ogwumike of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks, were on hand. Nneka was a two-time finalist for the Wooden Award.
Chiney led the Cardinal to the Final Four, where they lost in the national semifinals. She was a two-time Pac-12 player of the year and three-time league defensive player of the year. As a senior, Ogwumike averaged 26.5 points and 12.1 rebounds this season. She ended her career as the league’s career scoring leader with 2,722 points.
Ogwumike carries a 3.6 grade-point average in international relations, a component of the award that was important to Wooden.
She had accompanied her sister to the Wooden Award gala in previous years only to see Nneka go home empty-handed.
”I guess three time’s a charm,” Chiney said.
While accepting the Legends of Coaching award earlier in the evening, VanDerveer inadvertently blurted out that Ogwumike was the women’s Wooden winner. VanDerveer stopped herself midway through, but the news was already out of the bag.
Ogwumike received 774 points in nationwide voting that took place from March 12-25, including the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament. Odyssey Sims of Baylor finished second with 761.
Breanna Stewart of national champion Connecticut was third at 732. Kayla McBride of Notre Dame finished fourth at 562 and Alyssa Thomas of Maryland was fifth at 509.
”I’m so humbled,” Ogwumike said. ”The girls on the video are equally as deserving. I’m just in awe.”