Bowling Green, Ky. — The Women’s Basketball Coaches Association announced that Western Kentucky University senior forward Crystal Kelly has been named one of 25 preseason candidates for the 2008 State Farm Wade Trophy — an award presented annually to the WBCA national player of the year. Kelly was also a candidate for the award during her junior season in 2006-07.
Kelly — who enters her senior season needing just 237 points to become WKU’s all-time leading scorer — is the only player from the Sun Belt Conference on the list. In fact, she is the only player from a non-BCS conference to be recognized. She is coming off a season that saw her earn WBCA/Kodak and Associated Press All-America honors, as well as first-team all-Sun Belt laurels for the third straight year
With one season left to go in her record-setting career, Kelly is one of just three players in school history to score over 2,000 points, entering the season with 2,036. She is also just 99 rebounds shy of joining Lillie Mason and ShaRae Mansfield as the only players in school history to record 1,000 rebounds. In 2006-07, the Louisville, Ky., native set a school record with 770 points — averaging 24.1 points per game. Kelly tied her career high by shooting 61.1 percent from the floor as a junior, and was a 77.4 percent free-throw shooter as she set a school record both for free throws made (257) and attempted (332).
The 2008 State Farm Wade Trophy winner will be announced at the WBCA National Convention held in conjunction with the NCAA Women’s Final Four in Tampa, Fla., April 5-8, 2008.