Feb. 26, 2013
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INDIANAPOLIS - Auburn senior Blanche Alverson was one of five NCAA Division I women's basketball student-athletes named to the inaugural Allstate WBCA Good Works Team, AllState and the Women's Basketball Coaches Association announced Tuesday.
The award recognizes a unique group of women's college basketball student-athletes who have made outstanding contributions in the areas of volunteerism and civic involvement including building homes for the elderly, leading basketball clinics, reading to students and working with children with hearing disabilities.
"The men and women being recognized with this award have demonstrated a commitment to excellence on and off the court," said Pam Hollander, senior director of marketing for Allstate Insurance Company and a member of the 2013 NABC and WBCA Good Works Team selection panels. "Allstate commends these student-athletes for their contributions and are very proud to introduce the inaugural NABC and WBCA Good Works Teams."
Joining Alverson, a native of Andalusia, Ala., on the inaugural AllState WBCA Good Works Team are Whitney Hand (Oklahoma), Caroline King (Brown), Drey Mingo (Purdue) and Cizelle Studevent (Penn State).
Alverson was selected to the team largely due to her work with Ballin' For Books, the book drive community service program she created a year ago. In the first year of Ballin' For Books, Auburn fans donated more than 1,100 books that were then given to the Pine Hills Literacy Project, the Loachapoka Library and various other reading programs. Now in its second year, the program collected more than 400 books last weekend with two more opportunities coming up to give. Books this year will be given to the Pine Hills Literacy Project and the Hudson Family Foundation.
Athletic departments submitted 161 nominations for deserving student-athletes. From the nominations, two voting panels headlined by former University of Arizona student-athlete, five-time NBA champion and college basketball analyst Steve Kerr, and former University of Tennessee star and 2012 WNBA championship team member Tamika Catchings, selected two 10-member teams - each featuring five student-athletes from the NCAA Division I level and five student-athletes from NCAA® Divisions II, III and the NAIA.
"We believe in the potential of this exemplary program as an opportunity to promote the good works taking place in collegiate athletics," said Beth Bass, CEO of the WBCA. "The Good Works Team recognizes student-athletes who are conscientious and caring individuals who will continue to make significant contributions as civic leaders in communities across the United States."
Members of the Allstate WBCA Good Works Team will be recognized during the 2013 WBCA Convention and at the 2013 NCAA Women's Final Four in New Orleans, and will also participate in a local community project. Allstate is an official corporate partner of the NABC, WBCA and NCAA.
In addition to Hollander, Kerr and Catchings, the 2013 Allstate NABC and WBCA Good Works Team selection panel members include: former college basketball student-athletes Greg Anthony (UNLV), Alana Beard (Duke) and former NABC Player of the Year Jason Williams (Duke), former head coaches Bobby Cremins, Al Skinner, Marsha Sharp, and Nell Fortner, WBCA board member Coquese Washington, and college basketball media members Seth Davis, Andy Katz, Carolyn Peck, and LaChina Robinson.
Since 2008, Allstate has partnered with the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) as sponsor of the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team, which shines a spotlight on the positive, off-the-field impact college football student-athletes have on their communities. Through an arrangement with the AFCA, NABC and WBCA, Allstate is able to expand the Good Works Team to also recognize college basketball student-athletes at all levels who donate their time and effort to make a difference off the court.
More information about the Allstate WBCA Good Works Team is available at www.wbca.org.
Fans that would like to give to Alverson's Ballin' For Books program will be able to prior to the Auburn men's basketball game against Vanderbilt on Saturday. The final opportunity will be at the women's regular-season finale against Mississippi State on Sunday.