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INDIANAPOLIS — The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) and Allstate Insurance Company today announced an all-time high 257 total nominees for the 2016 Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams. This distinguished award shines a spotlight on a select group of student-athletes who have shown dedication to community service and altruism in their communities.
In its fourth year, the Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams® recognize players at all levels of college basketball who have made outstanding contributions in the areas of volunteerism and civic involvement. From establishing nonprofits that provide youth with the necessary tools to become leaders of tomorrow, to raising awareness around pertinent issues that could save lives, these student-athletes exhibit impeccable leadership skills both on and off the court.
Gesell is a four-year starting point guard for Iowa who ranks sixth in Iowa career assists (398). The native of South Sioux City, Nebraska, is only the third Hawkeye to ever amass 800 points, 350 assists, 200 rebounds, and 100 steals in three years. The Hawkeye senior co-captain, who graduated with a degree in finance in three years, is a 2015 Academic All-American and two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. Gesell and the Hawkeyes host Florida State at 8:20 p.m. (CT) tonight on Mediacom Court at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Disterhoft, a junior from Iowa City, Iowa, is a team elected co-captain. The three-year starter has played in every game of her collegiate career, starting 58 consecutive games. The 2015 third team academic All-American has scored in double figures in every game this season, and in 52-of-58 career starts. Disterhoft, a preseason All-Big Ten selection by the coaches, became the 34th player in program history to surpass the 1,000 career point mark in the second game of the season. She has since moved up to 31st on Iowa’s all-time scoring list with 1,088 career points. The two-time All-Big Ten honoree averages 15.9 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 3.6 assists per game. Disterhoft and the 24th-ranked Hawkeyes return to action tonight in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge at Virginia Wednesday. Tipoff is slated for 6 p.m. (CT) in Charlottesville, Virginia.
“The community service efforts from the nominees on the 2016 Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams are an inspiration to Allstate, our agents and our employees,” said Thomas Clarkson, president of the west territory for Allstate Insurance Company and a member of the 2016 NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams® selection panels. “Allstate is honored to embark on another year of collaboration with the NABC and WBCA, and together recognize student-athletes for their unwavering commitment to making a difference.”
The 154 NABC nominees and the 103 WBCA nominees were submitted by sports information directors and college basketball coaches across the country. From the nominations, special voting panels, headlined by former Duke University basketball athlete, two-time NCAA champion and seven-time NBA All-Star Grant Hill, and former University of Tennessee basketball athlete, NCAA champion and WNBA legend Tamika Catchings, will select two 10-member teams comprised of five student-athletes from the NCAA Division I level and five student-athletes from Divisions II, III and the NAIA. The final roster of 20 award recipients will be unveiled in February.
“The Allstate WBCA Good Works Team is a nationally recognized award that continues to honor an impressive group of student-athletes who strive to better our society through service efforts. The WBCA family of coaches celebrates all the women’s and men’s basketball student-athletes who demonstrate a respect for the power of sports coupled with the responsibility to give back to others,” said WBCA Executive Director Danielle Donehew. “The WBCA is proud to partner with Allstate and commends the recognition of these remarkable student-athletes for their significant humanitarian contributions.”
Members of the Allstate NABC Good Works Team will be invited by Allstate, an official corporate partner of the NCAA, to the 2016 NABC Convention and 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four in Houston, where they will participate in a community service project benefitting the city. Members of the Allstate WBCA Good Works Team will be recognized during the 2016 WBCA Convention and at the 2016 NCAA Women’s Final Four in Indianapolis, and will also participate in a local volunteer project. Allstate is an official corporate partner of the NABC, WBCA and NCAA.
“Once again as we have a record number of nominees for the Allstate Good Works Teams, it’s very evident that our men’s and women’s student-athletes in college basketball are unselfish and unwavering in their commitment to service,” said Jim Haney, executive director of the NABC. “From global initiatives in third-world countries to feeding the hungry and sheltering the homeless around their own communities, these young men and women are very deserving of the recognition that Allstate provides with this exemplary program.”
In addition to Clarkson, Hill and Catchings, the 2016 Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Team selection panel members include: former college basketball student-athletes Clark Kellogg (Ohio State University / CBS Sports), and Alana Beard (Duke University); media members Seth Davis (Sports Illustrated/CBS), Dana O’Neil (ESPN), Carolyn Peck (ESPN) and LaChina Robinson (ESPN/FOX); former head coaches Bobby Cremins (Georgia Tech/College of Charleston), Seth Greenberg (Virginia Tech University), Marsha Sharp (Texas Tech University) and Nell Fortner (Auburn University); and current college basketball coach Coquese Washington (Penn State University).
More information about the Allstate NABC Good Works Team and the Allstate WBCA Good Works Team is available at nabc.org and wbca.org.