And there was much rejoicing throughout Breadstick Land.
The Lady Vols just keep getting stronger as the year progresses, and people are noticing. The SEC Women's Basketball Awards have been announced, and Tennessee fared rather well. The Lady Vols who received awards are:
- Shekinna Stricklen: First Team All-SEC; SEC Player of the Year
Glory Johnson: First Team All-SEC; SEC All-Defensive Team
- Meighan Simmons: Second team All-SEC; SEC All-Freshman Team; SEC Freshman of the Year
- Pat Summitt: SEC Coach of the Year
Glory Johnson might have come very close to a couple other awards: Defensive Player of the Year (won by Kentucky's Victoria Dunlap), and Sixth Woman of the Year, won by Vanderbilt's Stephanie Holzer. I have absolutely no problem with those selections, however; both Dunlap and Holzer are worthy winners.
In my mind, Summitt was a deserving winner of COY, as the team is looking mighty impressive despite a constant slate of injuries throughout the season. Sweeping the SEC through that load of injuries took some considerable skill, and the entire staff should feel pleased with this award.
Meighan Simmons was the obvious choice for FOY. Despite her mid-season slump in conference play, she was still the most impactful freshman in the conference and basically kick-started Tennessee at the beginning of the season.
I'm most pleased with Stricklen's award, though. She doesn't get enough credit for just how good of a player she is. Despite her inclination to let others take the credit, she can completely dominate a game when she wants, from the interior or from the perimeter. Her defense is impeccable, and there is probably nobody else in the NCAA who can play all five positions as consistently well as she can.