Women's Basketball


Lacey Simpson
Lacey Simpson
22

Class:
Senior

Hometown:
Zion, Ill.

High School:
Zion-Benton

Height:
6-1

Position:
Forward

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
• Third Team All-Big Ten (media) in 2009 and 2010
• Big Ten All-Defensive Team in 2009 and 2010
• Big Ten Steals Champion in 2009 (2.89 spg) and 2010 (3.61 spg)
• Ranks second in Big Ten history in career steals with 368
• Shattered previous UI career steals record by 116
• Illinois career games played leader (135)
• Illinois single-season steals record with 113 in 2009-10
• Ranks second on the Illinois career blocks list (163), third in assists (451), fourth in rebounding (900) and 17th in scoring (1,166)
• Signed a free agent contract with the WNBA's San Antonio Silver Starts following her senior season

CAREER MILESTONES / RECORDS
Finished as Illinois' career steals leader and ranked second all-time in Big Ten history with 368 ... Illinois' career games played leader (135) ... Ranks second on the Illinois career blocks list (163), third on the assists list (451), fourth on the career rebounding list (900), ninth on the threes made list (86) and 17th on the scoring list (1,166) ... 2009 and 2010 Big Ten All-Defensive Team ... 2009 and 2010 third team All-Big Ten (media) ... Two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection.

AT ILLINOIS
2009-10 - RS Senior: Named to the Big Ten All-Defensive team and third team All-Big Ten by the media for the second year in a row ... Led the Big Ten and ranked seventh in the nation in steals per game (3.3) ... Finished career as Illinois' career steals leader and ranked second on the Big Ten's all-time steals list with 368 ... Broke the Illinois single-season steals record with 113 ... Broke the Illinois career record for most games played (135) ... Finished her career ranked in the UI career top-5 in six different categories (steals, games played, blocked shots, games started, assists and rebounding) ... Is the only player in Illinois history with 100+ assists in four different seasons ... Played in all 34 games, starting 33 ... Averaged 9.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 3.3 steals per game ... Led the team with 38 three-pointers made ... Had a season-high eight steals on two occassions, March 4 vs. Indiana in the Big Ten Tournament and at Michigan State on Feb. 18 ... Reached the 1,000-point milestone on Jan. 21 against Iowa, becoming the 23rd player in Illinois history to score 1,000 points, with 15 points, nine rebounds, five assists and four steals against the Hawkeyes ... Tied her career-high with 19 points against Minnesota on Jan. 10, shooting 8-of-14 from the field and also contributing five steals ... Had seven steals in the win over Wisconsin on Jan. 3, becoming the 13th player in Big Ten history to reach the 300-steal milestone ... Named to the Holiday Beach Classic All-Tournament Team, averaging 9.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 blocks in Illinois' wins over Cal Poly (Nov. 28) and Alabama (Nov. 29) ... Named the team's Best Defensive Player at the postseason awards banquet.

2008-09 - RS Junior: Named to the Big Ten All-Defensive Team ... Also named third team All-Big Ten by the media and honorable mention All-Big Ten by the coaches ... Led the Big Ten in steals (2.89) in conference games and for all games (3.13) ... Broke the Illinois career steals record against Penn State in the Big Ten Tournament and ended her junior year with 255 career thefts ... Played and started in all 31 games ... Ranked third in rebounding (9.1) and tied for third in the Big Ten with seven double-doubles in conference play ... Came close to averaging a double-double in Big Ten play (10.7 pts / 9.4 reb) ... One of only three players in the nation to average over 9.0 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game ... Was the only player to rank in the top-10 in the conference in rebounding, steals and assists ... Had a monster game in the Big Ten Tournament win over  Penn State, breaking UI single-game tournament records for rebounds (14) and assists (7), while also scoring a career-high 19 points and adding four steals and two blocks ... Dished out a season-high seven assists on Feb. 22 against Penn State ... Was named Big Ten Player of the Week on Feb. 10 for averaging 14.0 points, 13.0 rebounds 5.0 steals and 2.5 blocks in games against Michigan State and Indiana ... Had 12 points and a career-high 15 rebounds against Iowa on Jan. 15 ... Pulled down 12 rebounds and tied her career-high with five blocks against Minnesota on Jan. 3 ... Named Illinois' Big Ten Sportsmanship honoree ... Won the Coaches Award and named the team's Best Defensive Player at the postseason awards banquet.

2007-08 - RS Sophomore: Played in all 35 games, starting 24 ... Led the team and ranked fifth in the Big Ten in steals (2.37 per game), and her total of 83 thefts ranks fifth on the UI single-season steals list ... Ranked third in the Big Ten in assist-turnover ratio (1.64) ... Notched a double-double in the WNIT Third Round game at Marquette with 12 points and a season-high 14 rebounds ... Scored 15 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the Big Ten Tournament championship game vs. Purdue ... Had a career-high 12 assists on Dec. 8 vs. Chicago State, also scoring 10 points for a double-double ... Won the team award for Most Courageous Player ... Academic All-Big Ten selection for the second-straight season .

2006-07 - RS Freshman: Played in all 31 games, starting 30 ... Averaged 7.1 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, while leading the team in assists (100), steals (71) and blocks (39) ... Broke the Illinois freshman record for blocked shots with 39, along with fellow freshman Jenna Smith ... Ranked fourth in the Big Ten in steals for all games (2.29) and finished in the top-12 in five other categories (assist/TO ratio - 9th, assists - 10th, blocked shots - 10th, defensive rebounds - 10th and overall rebounding - 12th) ... Nearly tallied a triple-double on two occasions: at Purdue on Feb. 8 (12 p, 11 r, 7 a) and at Iowa on Feb. 15 (18 p, 8 r, 7 a) ... Had two double-doubles on the year, at Purdue on Feb. 8 and at UIC on Nov. 14 ... Scored a season-high 18 points at Iowa on Feb. 15 ... Scored a team-high 17 points to open the season against Butler in her first collegiate start ... Knocked down 23 three-pointers, third most on the team ... Won the team's Most Improved Player award ... Academic All-Big Ten selection.

2005-06 - Freshman: Athletic wing played in four of the first five games before undergoing internal surgery ... Sat out the rest of the season recovering from the surgery and was granted a medical hardship waiver ... Had four points, a team-high four rebounds and three assists in her Illini debut on Nov. 18 at Loyola ... Grabbed four boards in a career-high 13 minutes vs. Northern Iowa on Nov. 26 ... Had 19 steals and five blocked shots in four games on Illinois' Tour of Italy in May.

HIGH SCHOOL
Listed as the 85th-ranked senior in the country by All-Star Girls Report ... Is Zion-Benton's all-time leading scorer with 1,578 points ... Averaged 15.4 points, 13.3 rebounds and nearly six assists, five blocks and four steals per game as a senior in 2004-05 ... Led the Zee-Bee's to 23 wins that year, the most in school history, and was named to four different All-State teams in the process (Champaign News-Gazette-1st, Associated Press-3rd, Illinois Basketball Coaches Association-4th, Chicago Tribune-honorable mention) ... Was also on the Chicago Sun-Times top-20 All-Area team as a senior ... Averaged 20 points and 10 rebounds as a junior in 2003-04 ... Was a three-time first team All-North Suburban Conference pick and a four-time All-Lake County selection ... Was named the team MVP three of her four seasons ... Holds the Zion-Benton school record with eight three-pointers in a single game ... Attended the Adidas Top Ten All-American Camp in Suwanee, Ga., during the summer of 2004 ... High school coach was Mike Cliff ... Also played for the Illinois Full Package AAU team under coach Ralph Gesualdo.

PERSONAL
Born Nov. 10, 1986 ... Earned a bachelor's degree in sport management in May of 2009 ... Spent 2009-10 pursuing a master's in human resource education ... Daughter of Wesley and Barbara Simpson ... Has an older brother, Wesley D. Simpson, Jr. ... Recipient of Zion-Benton's African Achievement Award.

GETTING TO KNOW LACEY...
Nicknames: Lulu, Lacey Lu, Lulu Baby
Why Illinois? Illinois has great facilities, great tradition and atmosphere and the top academics.
Favorite Place On Campus: The Union. A great place to have lunch and take a break between classes.
Best Memory As An Illini: Making it to the Big Ten Tournament Championship in 2008.
Favorite Coach Law Quote: "Those who wait will also serve."
What I've Learned From Coach Law: Your actions speak louder than your words. If you want to be the best then let hard work be your best friend.
Favorite Athlete: Deron Williams
Favorite Sports Team: Chicago Bears
Favorite Movie: Love and Basketball
Favorite Movie Quote: "I'm a ball player," - Love and Basketball
Favorite TV Show: The Game
Favorite Meal: Skully's Chicken and Fish
Favorite Activity Outside Of Basketball: Traveling any chance that I get
The Person I Admire Most Is: My mother. She's the hardest worker I know.
Something Most People Don't Know About Me: I'm a neat freak...Serious case of OCD!!!
My Best Non-Athletic Talent: Dancing
Biggest Sports Thrill: Breaking the Illinois steals record!
Three Words That Describe My Play: Fast, Furious and Curious!
Plans After Illinois: Play in the WNBA or overseas

SIMPSON'S CAREER STATISTICS

Minutes Total 3-Point F-Throws Rebounds
Year gp-gs min avg fg fga pct fg fga pct ft fta pct off def tot avg pf fo ast t/o blk stl pts avg
2005-06 4-0 41 10.3 4 9 .444 0 1 .000 0 0 .000 5 5 10 2.5 3 0 4 2 0 4 8 2.0
2006-07 31-30 910 29.4 84 208 .404 23 68 .338 28 42 .667 62 143 205 6.6 68 1 100 94 39 71 219 7.1
2007-08 35-24 977 27.9 101 277 .365 17 73 .233 34 49 .694 56 118 174 5.0 92 3 110 67 38 83 253 7.2
2008-09 31-31 1108 35.7 151 387 .390 8 37 .216 47 65 .723 78 205 283 9.1 89 1 110 108 42 97 357 11.5
2009-10 34-33 1129 33.2 135 319 .423 38 110 .345 21 37 .568 67 161 228 6.7 97 5 127 75 44 113 329 9.7
TOTAL 135-118 4165 30.9 475 1200 .396 86 289 .298 130 193 .674 268 632 900 6.7 349 10 451 346 163 368 1166 8.6

updated May 2010

HEADLINES