The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association gave us their watch list for the Nancy Lieberman Award, which goes to the nation’s best point guard. This season, there are two from our beloved conference, The Ohio Bobcats CeCe Hooks and the Miami RedHawks Lauren Dickerson. This is big news, as last season the MAC had no candidates, much to the surprise of this writer. Hooks and Dickerson will have to up their games tremendously to win this award for two reasons. One, there is the inherent big school bias, but also because Sabrina Ionescu is looking to win her third in a row.
Dickerson is a senior that puts the point in point guard. She should easily surpass 2000 points on her career this year. She has averaged over 16 points per game in each of her first three seasons, and over 5 assists in her last two. While she isn’t the biggest point guard in the world, the she accounts for 4 rebounds per contest over her career. In a bit of a shooting slump last season, she still managed to earn First Team All-MAC honors.
Three hours to the East, CeCe Hooks has put together quite the career herself. The 5’8 junior is also scrappy, and gets her points driving to the basket. Last season she averaged 17.7 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 4.1 assists. She was also MAC Defensive player of the Year.
Both of these players are the epitome of what a point guard does for the team, including leadership. I personally have both teams at the top of my teams to beat this season, and the play of this pair is a big reason why. It should be noted that Miami and Ohio were listed in the first four out of the NCAA tournament last season. The streak of multiple bids by the conference is still very much on the table, in part because of the play of these two point guards.