On Monday afternoon, senior forward Chiney Ogwumike was selected by the Connecticut Sun with the first overall pick of the 2014 WNBA Draft, becoming the second Stanford player in the last three years after older sister Nneka Ogwumike to be taken as the top pick in the annual professional draft. Additionally, with the seventh pick of the third round, the Seattle Storm drafted fifth-year senior forward Mikaela Ruef.
The honor for Ogwumike comes less than a week after she received the 2014 John R. Wooden Award last Friday as the most outstanding player of the season in NCAA women’s basketball. The two-time consensus All-American was also the Capital One Academic All-American of the Year and the Pac-12 Women’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
This past season, Ogwumike became the Pac-12’s all-time leading scorer and rebounder, as well as the Pac-12 record holder for the most points scored in a single season and highest single-season field goals made. In doing so, she captained the Cardinal to a 33-4 record and a Final Four berth at the NCAA Tournament.
Ogwumike became the Cardinal’s 11th first-round WNBA Draft pick in school history and the sixth such pick in the last seven years. She also joins Mark Appel ‘13 of baseball, Andrew Luck ‘12 of football and Nneka Ogwumike as the fourth Cardinal athlete to be selected first overall in a professional sports draft in the last three years.
This season, Ruef helped power the Cardinal to the Final Four as she won the Stanford regional’s Most Outstanding Player, averaging 14 points, 11 rebounds and four assists in Sweet 16 and Elite Eight wins over Penn State and North Carolina, respectively. She started 36 of the 37 games this season, developing into a great rebounder and another scoring threat on the post to complement Ogwumike.