The Southeastern Conference gets a lot of attention for being a football conference as well as a softball and baseball conference. But do not let anyone fool you … a plethora of all-time women’s ballers have come through the SEC’s ranks as well.
Two of them were LSU’s Sylvia Fowles and Tennessee’s Candace Parker, both of whom are among the SEC’s Women’s Legends Class of 2020.
Candace Parker Announced as UT’S 2020 SEC Women’s Legend https://t.co/yNgmjoAWsp
— 99.1 The Sports Animal (@SportsRadioWNML) January 7, 2020
🐐 Back-to-back national champ
🐐 4 national player of the year awards
🐐 2,137 career points#LVFL icon Candace Parker named to the SEC 2020 Women’s Legends Class
— Lady Vol Basketball (@LadyVol_Hoops) January 6, 2020
S Y L
— Minnesota Lynx (@minnesotalynx) January 7, 2020
— Redhead Lorri 👩🏼🦰 (@RedheadLorri) January 7, 2020
Before Fowles became a force to be reckoned with in the WNBA, she was a force to be reckoned with inside the SEC and NCAA. Her LSU career spanned from 2004-08 and was a member of four Women’s Final Four Teams while at Baton Rouge. “Sweet Syl” was the 2007-08 SEC Player of the Year and was enshrined in the LSU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2015. Fowles also set school records for rebounds with 1,570, blocked shots with 321 and made free throws (494).
She averaged over 17 points per game and 10 rebounds per game in her senior season with the Tigers. In Nov. 2017, she joined her Lynx teammate Seimone Augustus as the only players in history to have their numbers retired by the team. Her No. 34 was raised to the rafters of the Maravich Center.
Parker’s career with the Lady Vols spanned the same time as Fowles’ time with LSU and they were taken in the same draft in 2008. She won two national championships at Tennessee and is one of six women’s players at Tennessee to have her jersey hanging from Thompson-Boling Arena’s rafters.
Parker holds nine all-time records in Knoxville, including most dunks in a career. She only played three seasons at Tennessee before being drafted into the WNBA, but is No. 3 in points with 2,137 and No. 8 in rebounds with 972. Parker was the SEC’s Female Athlete of the Year in 2008 along with winning Player of the Year honors in 2007. She was taken first overall in the ’08 draft by the Los Angeles Sparks and won her first WNBA championship in 2016 after defeating Fowles’ Lynx in an unforgettable five-game series.
Five other SEC schools chose basketball players as their representatives. Those are Tawana McDonald Robinson of Georgia, Sarah Lowe of Florida, Whitney Boddie of Auburn, Martha (Alwal) Omot of Mississippi State and Andrea Williams of Texas A&M who also played volleyball.
The other schools’ representatives were gymnast Ashley Miles Greig (Alabama), track and field coach Bev Lewis who also had tenures as director of woman’s athletics, associate vice chancellor and executive associate athletic director (Arkansas), tennis player Sarah Witten Cantey (Kentucky), tennis player Catherine Yelverton (Ole Miss), track and field’s Natasha Kaiser-Brown (Missouri), golfer Siew-Ai Lim (South Carolina) and golfer Nakia Davis (Vanderbilt).
Congratulations to Fowles, Parker and the entire 2020 class!