Karisma Penn became the ninth All-American in Illinois history when she earned honorable mention honors Tuesday.
April 2, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois senior forward Karisma Penn was named an honorable mention All-American by the Associated Press, the organization announced Tuesday. It is Penn's first career All-America honor and the first for an Illini player since Jenna Smith also earned honorable mention All-America laurels in 2007-08.
Penn had an outstanding senior season, leading the Orange and Blue to a 19-14 record and the Women's NIT quarterfinals, which equaled the deepest postseason run in school history. Penn averaged 19.2 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.91 steals and 2.18 blocks per game, while shooting 50.6 percent from the field. She was the only player in the country to rank in the top five in her conference in all five categories, standing second in the Big Ten in rebounds and steals, third in blocks, fourth in scoring and fifth in field-goal percentage.
She also led the league in offensive rebounds (3.8 rpg) and ranked eighth in minutes played (35.7 mpg), the only post player in the top 10 in minutes. She ranked 25th nationally in steals per game (2.91), 28th in scoring (19.2 ppg), 29th in blocked shots per game (2.91), 35th in field-goal percentage (50.6) and 59th in rebounding (9.6 rpg) this season.
The Shaker Heights, Ohio, native broke Illinois' career records for blocked shots (271) and attempted free throws (747), and broke single-season records for offensive rebounds (123), made free throws (179) and attempted free throws (562) in 2012-13. She leaves Illinois first in career blocked shots (271), second in double-doubles (42), rebounds (1,043) and field-goal attempts (1,530); third in games played (129); fourth in scoring (1,965) and steals (242); tied for fourth in offensive rebounds (364) and fifth in career field goals (736).
Penn holds two of the top five rebounding seasons in school history (4th, 320, 2010-11; 5th, 317, 2012-13) and four of the top seven blocked shots seasons (1st, 78, 2010-11; 2nd, 72, 2012-13; 4th, 64, 2011-12; 6th, 57, 2009-10). Her 96 steals this year ranked fourth in a season in school history - and were the most ever by a post player - and her career-high 633 points were fourth-most in a season. Her 14 double-doubles ranked sixth in a season and her 223 field goals were eighth.
Penn now prepares for the WNBA Draft, which will be held Monday, April 15. The first round will begin at 7 p.m. CT on ESPN2, with ESPNU carrying the second and third rounds beginning at 8 p.m.