The Tennessee Sports Writers Association (TSWA) announces a first-year coach who turned around a program that won five games the season before with essentially little change to the roster heads up the association's college basketball awards for the 2022-23 season.
Karen Booker's revival of the Trevecca Nazarene University women's basketball program earned her the 2023 TSWA Pat Summitt Women's Basketball Coach of the Year award announced Monday.
Booker is joined by Belmont University junior guard Destinee Wells who led the Bruin's transition to the Missouri Valley Conference as the women's basketball player of the year.
Jerry Stackhouse, the Southeastern Conference's co-coach of the year, is the 2023 TSWA Men's Basketball Coach of the Year after leading Vanderbilt University to its most league wins since the 2015-16 season. In addition, Kendrick Davis of the University of Memphis is the men's basketball player of the year after leading the Tigers to a second straight NCAA Tournament berth.
The awards are handed out on July 13 at the 2023 TSWA Hall of Fame Ceremony and Awards Dinner in Lebanon, Tennessee. The dinner begins at 6:00 PM.
Booker, a Franklin native who was all-SEC as a player at Vanderbilt, was hired as Trevecca's sixth women's coach last summer. She added only two freshmen and a transfer who was a reserve yet led the team to a 21-win season and the program's first appearance in the NCAA Division II Championships.
It was the Trojans' most wins in their 11-year tenure at the NCAA level. They also went undefeated at home for the first time, going 14-0. Trevecca made the Great Midwest Athletic Conference Tournament as the No. 3 seed and advanced to the Great Midwest Finals after being picked to finish 12th out of 13 teams in the preseason coaches poll.
Booker led the Trojans to the No. 5 seed in the Midwest Regional, earning them a bid for the NCAA Division II Championships. There, the fifth-seeded Trojans won their opening game over fourth-seed Michigan Tech.