OKLAHOMA CITY -- The Amateur Softball Association of America and USA Softball announced the top 25 finalists for the 2014 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, which will be announced at the opening of the 2014 NCAA Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City. This award, which is considered the most prestigious honor in Division I women’s collegiate softball, is designed to recognize the outstanding athletic achievement by female players across the country.
Now in its 13th year, previous recipients of the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award are UCLA catcher Stacey Nuveman (2002), Texas pitcher Cat Osterman ('03, '05 and '06), Florida State pitcher Jessica Van der Linden ('04), Tennessee pitcher Monica Abbott ('07), Virginia Tech pitcher Angela Tincher ('08), Washington pitcher Danielle Lawrie ('09 and '10), Stanford shortstop Ashley Hansen ('11), and Oklahoma pitcher Keilani Ricketts ('12 and '13).
This year’s top 25 is comprised of 12 seniors, 10 juniors and three sophomores. The student-athletes selected represent 16 NCAA Division I universities and five athletic conferences. Alabama, Arizona State, Florida State, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, South Alabama, Tennessee and Tulsa each have two players represented and Arizona, Baylor, Oklahoma, South Florida, Texas, UCLA and Western Illinois each have one member among the top 25 finalists.
Just prior to the start of post-season play, on May 7 the list will be narrowed to the top 10 finalists. The top three finalists will be announced May 21, while the winner of the 2014 USA Softball collegiate player of the year award will be revealed on May 27 prior to the start of the WCWS in Oklahoma City.
The USA Softball collegiate player of the year award is voted on by coaching representatives from 11 Division I conferences in the 15 ASA regions, members of the media who consistently cover Division I across the country as well as past winners of the award.