MARTIN, Tenn.- Heather Butler, a 5-5 guard on The University of Tennessee at Martin women’s basketball team, has been named to the 25-member 2012-13 preseason “Wade Watch” list for the 2013 State Farm Wade Trophy, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) announced today. The junior from Medina, Tenn. was the only player named from the Ohio Valley Conference and is the program’s first selection to the prestigious watch list.
“We are very honored that Heather has been nominated,” UT Martin head coach Kevin McMillan said. “It is very deserving for all of the work that she has put in. We are proud of her, her teammates, our program, and our university.”
Earning starts in all 32 games last season, Butler led the OVC and ranked fourth in the NCAA in scoring, tallying a program record 760 points (23.8 per game). She cracked double-figures scoring in every game, extending her record of 10 or more points in all 63 career games. She passed Pat Head Summitt as the fastest player in program history to reach 1,000 career points when she accomplished the feat in just her 50th career game. She reached the 30-point mark in five different games, including a single-game UT Martin record 42 point performance against Tennessee State.
In addition to leading the league in scoring (23.8), three-point field goals made (99), three-point field goal percentage (.423) and minutes played (37.8), she ranked in the top-10 in the OVC in four other statistical categories: assist-to-turnover ratio (1.7, fourth); field goal percentage (.426, seventh); free throw percentage (.811, seventh); and assists (3.3 apg, eighth).
As a sophomore, Butler set single-season UT Martin records for field goals made (266), field goals attempted (625) and three-point field goals made (99). A two-time All-OVC first team selection and 2012 OVC Tournament MVP, she helped UT Martin end the 2011-12 season as the top scoring team in the nation at 80.1 points per game.
Now in its 36th year, the State Farm Wade Trophy is named in honor of the late, legendary three-time national champion Delta State University coach, Lily Margaret Wade. Regarded as "The Heisman of Women's Basketball," the award is presented annually to the NCAA Division I Player of the Year by the National Association of Girls and Women in Sport (NAGWS) and the WBCA.
The preseason list is composed of top NCAA Division I women’s basketball players who best embody Wade's spirit from 18 institutions and eight conferences. A committee of coaches, administrators and media from across the United States compiled the list using the following criteria: game and season statistics, leadership, character, effect on their team and overall playing ability.
The complete list of preseason candidates for the 2013 State Farm Wade Trophy in alphabetical order: Alex Bentley (Penn State), Heather Butler (UT Martin), Carolyn Davis (Kansas), Elena Delle Donne (Delaware), Skylar Diggins (Notre Dame), Stefanie Dolson (Connecticut), Christina Foggie (Vanderbilt), Chassidy Fussell (Texas), Angel Goodrich (Kansas), Chelsea Gray (Duke), Brittney Griner (Baylor), Bria Hartley (Connecticut), Tayler Hill (Ohio State), Jordan Hooper (Nebraska), Maggie Lucas (Penn State), Anna Martin (DePaul), A’dia Mathies (Kentucky), Lindsey Moore (Nebraska), Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (Connecticut), Chiney Ogwumike (Stanford), Sugar Rodgers (Georgetown), Shoni Schimmel (Louisville), Odyssey Sims (Baylor), Alyssa Thomas (Maryland) and Elizabeth Williams (Duke).