ATLANTA (March 31, 2018) – The Atlanta Tipoff Club today announced that Mississippi State University junior Teaira McCowan is the first recipient of the newly-created Naismith Women’s Defensive Player of the Year award presented by Bona. 

McCowan was named the SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year and hold the record at Mississippi State for most rebounds in a season at 502, which is the second most in SEC history. She has helped lead the Bulldogs to an undefeated season and a NCAA Tournament Championship. She has set a school record with 27 double-doubles, the third-most in the nation. The 6’7” center has 973 rebounds and 179 blocked shots in her college career. 

“When it comes to defense, no one excels like Teaira, and we congratulate her on this prestigious award,” said Phil Sanchez, sport manager, professional sales, Bona US. “Bona is thrilled to be a part of this national honor and the Naismith Awards family.” 

“McCowan has had an amazing career this far, and her defensive talents have helped lead her team to the NCAA Tournament finals,” said Eric Oberman, executive director of the Atlanta Tipoff Club. “We look forward to seeing her play in the championship and in her senior year.” 

“I am so honored that the committee would select me to receive the first Naismith Defensive Player of the Year award,” said Teaira McCowan, winner of the Naismith Trophy for Women’s Defensive Player of the Year presented by Bona. “There are so many players who are so good defensively, that to receive this award is amazing. I have to thank my coaches for working with me to become the player I have grown into, and I wouldn’t receive this honor without having such great teammates who support and encourage me.” 

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Celebrating 50 Years of the Citizen Naismith Trophy 

Founded during the 1956-57 season, the Atlanta Tipoff Club is committed to promoting the game of basketball and recognizing the outstanding accomplishments of those who make the game so exciting. The Atlanta Tipoff Club administers the Naismith Awards, which have become the most prestigious national honors in all of college basketball. Named in honor of Dr. James Naismith, inventor of the game of basketball, the Naismith Trophy recognizes the top Men’s and Women’s College Basketball Players of the Year. Other Naismith Awards are presented to the Men’s and Women’s College Basketball Coaches of the Year, Boys’ and Girls’ High School Basketball Players and Coaches of the Year, Basketball Officials and Outstanding Contributors to the game. Celebrating its 50th year by honoring past winners, the Citizen Naismith Trophy was first presented to UCLA’s Lew Alcindor (later known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) in 1969. Old Dominion’s Anne Donovan won the inaugural Women’s Citizen Naismith Trophy in 1983. 

About Bona US 

Bona is an innovative, environmentally-conscious company dedicated to creating beautiful floors since 1919. Bona US, the North American subsidiary of BonaAB in Malmö, Sweden, manufactures and distributes floor care and home cleaning products. The first in the industry to offer a full system of waterborne hardwood floor finishing and floor care products certified for indoor air quality by GREENGUARD, Bona products can be found throughout the U.S. and Canada. From residue-free hardwood floor cleaners to a beautiful array of stains and high durability finishes, consumers, distributors and contractors trust Bona. For more information, please contact Bona US at (800) 872-5515 or 


Media Contacts:
Traci Messier
Jackson Spalding for the Atlanta Tipoff Club
[email protected]