April 04, 2008



Award Presentation Made to Three-Time Pac-10 Player-of-the-Year by Lowe’s
Today during NCAA® Women’s Final Four® Festivities in Tampa

(Tampa, FL): Stanford University guard Candice Wiggins – a dominating basketball player, outstanding student and a role model in the community – is the 2007-08 winner of the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award for NCAA women’s basketball. The award, selected by a nationwide vote of coaches, media and fans, is presented annually to college basketball’s top NCAA Division I senior student-athlete.

The announcement and trophy presentation was made today by Lowe’s during festivities surrounding the NCAA Women’s Final Four in Tampa, FL.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award has grown into the nation’s premier tribute to college seniors. The award identifies personal qualities that define a complete student-athlete, with criteria including excellence in the classroom, character and community, as well as performance on the court.

“I am very honored to have been selected as the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award winner from such a group of excellent student-athletes,” Wiggins said. “I have enjoyed every moment of my time as a student-athlete at Stanford and am very proud to represent the Cardinal in the classroom, on the court, and in the community. The support of my family, friends, coaches and teammates has been such a blessing and without them this would not be possible. This award is a reminder that as student-athletes we have a unique opportunity to reach out and be role models for aspiring young leaders.”

Wiggins is the first Pacific-10 Conference player to win this national honor in the Senior CLASS Award’s seven-year history. Past recipients of the women’s award include Sue Bird of Connecticut (2002), LaToya Thomas of Mississippi State (2003), Alana Beard of Duke (2004), Kendra Wecker of Kansas State (2005), Seimone Augustus of LSU (2006) and Alison Bales of Duke (2007).

As a senior, Wiggins has led Stanford to a 34-3 record, including 22 consecutive wins that have pushed the Cardinal into the Final Four this weekend. Wiggins has been dominating in the NCAA Tournament, including a 41-point performance in the regional finals that led Stanford past Maryland. In the tournament’s second round, Wiggins scored 44 points – third-most in NCAA tournament history and the most-ever in a first- or second-round game – and posted 10 rebounds and 8 assists against the University of Texas, El Paso.

A player who excels in every facet of the game, Wiggins is averaging 20.2 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game during her senior season. The only three-time Pac-10 Player of the Year, Wiggins is the all-time leading scorer at Stanford and in Pac-10 history.

A former high school McDonald’s All-American from San Diego, California, Wiggins will graduate in June 2008 with a degree in communications. She is a team leader in community service and has spent time volunteering in a mentoring program for young girls called the East Side Girls Shoot for the Stars. She has often visited the Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford and participates in a pen-pal program with local elementary school students.

“It has truly been a joy and an honor to coach a student-athlete as special as Candice,” said Sanford women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer. “She is everything a coach could ever want in terms of leadership, determination, and intensity, both on the court and off. I have told her since she first arrived at Stanford that I never wanted her to be a senior, because she is the type of one-of-a-kind student-athlete that a coach dreams of having. I am very proud of Candice for everything she has accomplished in her life and to see her recognized as the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award recipient.”

The Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award also names an All-Senior All-America Team based on voting results of the finalists. Joining Wiggins on the 2007-08 First Team is: Sylvia Fowles of Louisiana State, Crystal Langhorne of Maryland, Jackie McFarland of Colorado and Rebekah Parker of Evansville. The Second Team is Meagan Cowher of Princeton, Sarah Elliott of Kentucky, Carlene Hightower of LaSalle, Tasha Humphrey of Georgia and Sarah-Jo Lawrence of George Washington.

“The Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award is a prestigious award within collegiate athletics because it focuses on the total student-athlete,” said Bob Gfeller, senior vice president of marketing and advertising at Lowe’s. “Nationwide, talented athletes compete every day, but Lowe’s believes those individuals who are equally dedicated in the classroom and in their communities make the real difference with their abilities. Lowe’s salutes Candice, a true student-athlete, for using her platform in athletics to make an impact on those around her and congratulates her for being the 2008 award winner.”

Sportscaster Dick Enberg, Honorary Chairman of the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, first conceived the idea of an award for seniors in 2001 in response to the growing trend of men’s basketball players leaving school early for the NBA.

Lowe’s, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, expanded the Senior CLASS Award program in 2007 to include NCAA Division I men’s and women’s soccer, men’s hockey, men’s lacrosse, baseball and softball in addition to men’s and women’s basketball.