Maryland Women's Basketball Picked To Win The Big Ten
ROSEMONT, Ill. -- The Maryland women's basketball team was picked by both the Big Ten head coaches and the league's media panel to win the conference title this season. Senior Kaila Charles was voted Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year by both groups as well.
The Terrapins, who have won four of five Big Ten regular season titles since joining the league, were a unanimous pick by the 14 head coaches to win their fifth title. Michigan State, Indiana, Michigan and Purdue rounded out the top five predicted order of finish.
The league's media panel picked Maryland to win the conference as well, followed by Michigan, Michigan State, Indiana and Minnesota.
Charles is the top returning scorer in the league with 17.0 points per contest last year. She averaged 6.7 boards per game, good for 15th in the conference and 48.6 percent from the field. Charles was a unanimous All-Big Ten First Team selection at the end of last season. She ended the year with All-America honors from the Associated Press, the WBCA and the USBWA.
Charles and sophomore Taylor Mikesell were voted to the Preseason All-Big Ten Team by both the coaches and the media. The Big Ten Freshman of the Year, Mikesell led the conference and set a Maryland school record with 95 threes made. She was top-15 in the Big Ten with 13.4 points per game and in minutes played with 34.7 on average. To view the full list, click here.
The Terrapins are No. 5 in the preseason ESPNW and NCAA polls. The preseason Associated Press poll will be released Oct. 30.
Last season, the Terrapins earned a record of 29-5 last season and won the Big Ten regular season title. They advanced to the Big Ten Tournament championship game for the fifth straight year and then went to the NCAA Second Round.
The Terps welcome back all five starters, including Charles, Mikesell, Blair Watson and All-Big Ten honorees Stephanie Jones and Shakira Austin.
This year, Maryland welcomes the No. 3 freshman class in the country, featuring Faith Masonius, Diamond Miller, Ashley Owusu and Zoe Young, as well as transfer Mimi Collins.
The Terrapins' non-conference schedule is highlighted by contests with South Carolina, Clemson and North Carolina State. The Terrapins will also take on RPI top-50 team Quinnipiac and 2019 NCAA Tournament participant Belmont.
The Terrapins will officially open the new season Nov. 5 with a home matchup against Wagner at 11 a.m.
Maryland will host Cal U in its first of two exhibitions Oct. 25 and Lincoln University in its second exhibition Oct. 29.
-- Maryland Athletics press release
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