UT Martin women’s basketball junior forward Chelsey Perry is one of five finalists for the inaugural Becky Hammon Mid-Major Player of the Year Award, recognizing the nation’s best mid-major player, the first such award in women’s college basketball.
The finalists are made up of players from five different conferences including the Ivy League, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Missouri Valley Conference, Ohio Valley Conference and Summit League.
Joining Perry as finalists are Bella Alarie (Princeton), Ciara Duffy (South Dakota), Stella Johnson (Rider) and Sara Rhine (Drake). Each of the five finalists will be considered for the award with the winner being announced on Wednesday, April 1.
A native of Middleton, Perry has firmly placed her name on the national stage behind a stellar junior campaign. Perry, the reigning OVC Player of the Year, ranks first nationally in total points with 740 while leading the NCAA in field goals made with 286. The unanimous All-OVC first team honoree also ranks third in points per game (23.1) and field goals attempted (570) while sitting 10th with 86 blocks.
To be eligible for the award, players must compete in one of the 25 conferences deemed to be “mid-major”. The following conferences are considered high-major for this award, and thus ineligible: AAC, ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Pac-12, and SEC. Players are selected based on their on-court production in the 2019-20 NCAA season.
Hammon was a three-time All-American during her career at Colorado State and led the Rams to the Sweet 16 in 1999, the program’s only appearance to this day. She was signed by the New York Liberty in 1999 and was traded to the San Antonio Stars in 2007. Hammon retired in 2014 as a six-time All-Star and a two-time All-WNBA First Team honoree. In 2016 she was named one of the top 20 players in WNBA history. Hammon was the second female coach in NBA history when she began coaching for the San Antonio Spurs in 2014. Additionally, Hammon is the only woman to be a head coach in the NBA Summer League as well as the only woman to be a member of an NBA All-Star coaching staff.